or Connect
TheCatSite.com › Forums › General Forums › The Cat Lounge › Are dandelions poisonous?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:

Are dandelions poisonous?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
My SIL had her 21 month old son here last week and he was having a ball playing outside. Our yard is full of dandelions and he, of course, was picking them and she was teaching him how to blow the seeds off the puffy ones (more dandelions...great! ) Then, he started to try to eat them. Not the leaves, the but stems and the flower itself!

I know dandelion leaves are fine, but I was always told as a kid that the "milk" from the stems was poisonous. I have had dandelion wine (yummm!!!) but I have no idea what part of the plant is used. Are they poisonous or were my parents just trying to discourage me from eating everything from outside. (yeah, I was bad for that...when I was little I honestly believed I could run away from home and live on honeysuckle and wild onions).
post #2 of 17
They are not poisonous--my dad grew up eating them in salads and they are a fan favorite to my turtles!

Leslie
post #3 of 17
Dandelion wine is made from the flowers
I won't touch the stuff myself because of something I saw in the batch my parents made....
post #4 of 17
The leaves are used in salads; not sure about the flowers. At any rate, unless you can be sure they have not been sprayed with any sort of chemical, such as weed killer, don't eat them!

Makes me think of an English superstition my English mom always said: "If you pick dandelions, you'll wet your bed tonight." Where the HECK does THAT one come from, I wonder?????
post #5 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by Arlyn View Post
Dandelion wine is made from the flowers
I won't touch the stuff myself because of something I saw in the batch my parents made....
Do I want to know?? No, don't tell me, you will spoil a great summer tradition! I don't make it, I just drink it. LOL!
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by MargeCat View Post
The leaves are used in salads; not sure about the flowers. At any rate, unless you can be sure they have not been sprayed with any sort of chemical, such as weed killer, don't eat them!

Makes me think of an English superstition my English mom always said: "If you pick dandelions, you'll wet your bed tonight." Where the HECK does THAT one come from, I wonder?????
Now that's one even MY mom didn't use! Definitely a new one for me!

Believe me, NOTHING in this yard has been sprayed with weed killer. Hence the billions of dandelions and other various weeds in our yard. But, considering we live in the middle of the woods I guess that can be expected. But we have too many dogs and barn cats, not to mention natural critters, to use weedkiller or insectices. I may have to try some of those leaves for a salad...it would save me a 10 mile trip to the market.
post #7 of 17
No, they aren't. But you have to make sure that the ones you are using haven't been sprayed with pestacide! Now that stuff is poisonous!
post #8 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by calico2222 View Post
I may have to try some of those leaves for a salad...it would save me a 10 mile trip to the market.
Chick weed, shepherd's purse, and lamb's quarter are some other commonly eaten weeds. The first two can be used raw in salads and I've only seem lamb's quarter cooked - like one would with spinach and collard greens.

Stinging nettle, if you can find it, is another weed that is extremely nutritious cooked.
post #9 of 17
Purslane is also edible (come and get it this summer!) Also young hosta leaves though there are specific cultivars that are supposed to be more tasty!
Don't forget the light colored daylily flowers either-they taste like peas and are great with a dip!
post #10 of 17
Don't forget Pokeweed
post #11 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_wings View Post
Chick weed, shepherd's purse, and lamb's quarter are some other commonly eaten weeds. The first two can be used raw in salads and I've only seem lamb's quarter cooked - like one would with spinach and collard greens.

Stinging nettle, if you can find it, is another weed that is extremely nutritious cooked.
The chickweed and lamb's quarters look familiar so I'm sure they are probably growing around here. Does anyone know a good website with info about plants/weeds? I would love to learn more about them!

And, Arlyn we have a TON of poke around here but from what I understand the cooking process is like cooking a blowfish (as in one thing wrong you can kill someone). DH's grandmother used to make poke jelly and it was a big favorite in the family but I'm just afraid.
post #12 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by MargeCat View Post
Makes me think of an English superstition my English mom always said: "If you pick dandelions, you'll wet your bed tonight." Where the HECK does THAT one come from, I wonder?????
As far as I know, the green parts of the plant can have a mild diuretic effect, hence the saying. They are not toxic though.
post #13 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by calico2222 View Post
The chickweed and lamb's quarters look familiar so I'm sure they are probably growing around here. Does anyone know a good website with info about plants/weeds? I would love to learn more about them!
I figured you'd know the ones I listed, because unless a yard is treated you'll find them. You may recognize the shepherd's purse tiny heart shaped seeds more than the plant itself. I forgot to mention earlier, like lettuce when gathering up dandelion you want to try to get smaller softer leaves opposed to larger ones. Maybe it's just me, but they're too tough and seem a bit more bitter.

There are some other similar dandelion plants like hawkbits, hawksbeard, and catsear - these are not toxic but some are fuzzy.


My understanding is that poke can make someone sick, but isn't exactly deadly.

Look up "edible weeds". I find a lot of them out because if they're turtle safe, they're usually human safe, too.
post #14 of 17
No, you just pick the small poke leaves, under 6 or 7 inches, rinse them, boil them, rinse them, and their pot then boil them again.

I've eaten lots of poke and I'm still here
post #15 of 17
I love dandelions ... eat them in salad , jelly/ honey
post #16 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by strange_wings View Post
I figured you'd know the ones I listed, because unless a yard is treated you'll find them. You may recognize the shepherd's purse tiny heart shaped seeds more than the plant itself. I forgot to mention earlier, like lettuce when gathering up dandelion you want to try to get smaller softer leaves opposed to larger ones. Maybe it's just me, but they're too tough and seem a bit more bitter.

There are some other similar dandelion plants like hawkbits, hawksbeard, and catsear - these are not toxic but some are fuzzy.


My understanding is that poke can make someone sick, but isn't exactly deadly.

Look up "edible weeds". I find a lot of them out because if they're turtle safe, they're usually human safe, too.
Too cool! I did a search for "edible weeds" and am coming up with everything!! I think I have a virtual grocery store in my yard!!

First link was amazing....

http://www.wisebread.com/free-food-i...d-edible-weeds

Oh, and to answer the question about picking dandelions makes you wet the bed...here's the answer from the same link.

"Dandelion is a diuretic (it makes you pee, like asparagus), and the French have a special name for it: "pissenlits", which in addition to being fun to say, means, "wet your bed", although unless you have a weak bladder, you don't have much to worry about from dandelions in that regard. Dandelions have been used as a therapeutic herb in Europe and Asia for centuries. The root is used to stimulate the liver and cleanse the bloodstream. It's also apparently quite high in vitamin A."

This kind of stuff just fascinates me!
post #17 of 17
Thread Starter 
Ok, another question....we have a TON of wild garlic and onions around our house. Wild parsely too. They've never been treated with chemicals, but we do have a lot of barn cats (and other critters) that have made their home down here. Is it safe to eat (after washing it off of course) or would the animal waste that may be on it too much? I'm not too worried about the parsely since that will get washed, but since the onions and garlic are actually bulbs under the ground, would they absorb things? Do I have to clean them differently?
New Posts  All Forums:Forum Nav:
  Return Home
  Back to Forum: The Cat Lounge
TheCatSite.com › Forums › General Forums › The Cat Lounge › Are dandelions poisonous?