Monday, May 4, 2009

What's a Person To Do?



Here's the deal ... I love dandelions, really I do. Just not in my yard in vast quantities. But when there's a two-acre crop of them growing right next to you, it's really tough to keep them out of your yard and gardens.

I dig them out of the gardens, but how do you keep them under control in your yard without resorting to drastic means? Romie treats them individually with chemicals (:-O), but when you have an acre of property, that takes quite some time to do, especially when many of them need a second treatment.

So what's a person to do?

28 comments:

Colleen said...

I have no suggestions, other than to just do what you can, and not let it bother you too much. Remind yourself that dandelions are sources of food for beneficials. I can relate---I don't have an empty field nearby, but I do have a vacant house on either side of me, and both lawns have gone to the dandelions. I can handle it better now, when they're just cheerful little flowers. Once I start seeing all of those puffy seed heads forming, I get really annoyed :-)

Kim and Victoria said...

Wow. Wish I had an answer for you. Perhaps someone will.

nancybond said...

Embrace their little yellow heads and enjoy the view. :-)

Gail said...

Oh, my that is a lot of dandelions! No suggestions~~ what so ever...sorry, gail

Dirt Princess said...

Grin and bare it! I dunno...I have this same issues with rattlesnake weed. I have fought it for 3 years...and I am just over fighting with it.

Bren said...

We sprayed this weekend. Tough Call on what to do. :-(
Love your photo... it is pretty!

pigbook1 said...

I believe there is some sort of percentage at which you just kind of give up and either embrace it or kill the whole lawn and start over.
Personally, we go out every weekend and pick a bag full b/c the tortoises love them. One day they will be big enough that we will have to start picking our neighbors too :-)

Blackswamp_Girl said...

Become a huge fan of dandelion greens salads?

Nutty Gnome said...

Smile at how pretty they are and at what happy flowers they are!
It won't get rid of them, but it might make you feel better about them!:)

Lisa at Greenbow said...

Gosh Kylee, I just pick and dig at them and hope for the best. There is nothing you can do to thwart all of the seeds that are going to waft into your garden. I feel for you.

Dirt Princess said...

Found this for you....
http://ewainthegarden.blogspot.com/2009/05/taraxacum-officinale-jelly-and-syrup.html

Let me know how it goes. Looks interesting

perennialgardener said...

That is alot of Dandelions Kylee! I'm at a loss, don't know what to tell you.

Shady Gardener said...

One does what one must do. (Just close your eyes when he goes near your flowers!) I know he'll be careful. :-)

Kylee said...

Colleen ~ Well, it isn't an empty field, it's someone's yard. :-( It's just not important to him and I understand that.

Kim & Victoria, Lisa, Racquel, and Gail ~ Well, thanks for your sympathy, anyway! LOL

Nancy, Dirt Princess, and Nutty Gnome ~ I can enjoy looking at them when they're yellow, but can you imagine what it's like when they all go to seed??? And they do that innumerable times throughout the summer.

Bren ~ Yes, I think they they're pretty, too. They scream summer to me, but I sure don't want a carpet of them! :-) Romie sprayed them this afternoon. Also the clover, which he also hates. Clover doesn't bother me much.

pigbook1 ~ If it were OUR yard, we would kill it all and start over. But it's not. Sure keeps us busy trying to keep ours under control though. We mow high so the grass is thicker, which helps keep weeds to a minimum. Only so much you can do, I guess.

Kim ~ You know, we just might try them this year! LOL

Shady Gardener ~ Romie is very careful when spraying the dandelions. He knows how protective I am of the gardens! LOL.

Town Mouse said...

Could you ask your neighbor to mow?

Sylvana said...

Last year, our neighbor's yard was pretty much nothing but dandelions. It was scary.

I try to dig out a bucketful of dandelions every weekend with my Weedhound. It does add up and make a difference.

JulenaJo said...

Preen in flower beds is supposed to help. The only thing is, it prevents ANY seed from germinating, so if you have flowers that self-sow you won't get them either. You can get Preen that contains fertilizer too, so you're preventing weed seeds from germinating and feeding existing plants. Great product.

Dave said...

You could try to mow them when their flowers are still yellow. Or plant wildflowers to crowd out the dandelions.

The clover I just let go since it adds nitrogen to the soil it actually feeds the grass. the only problem are the bare spots it leaves when the warmer months come. The bees like it which is great to attract them to my squash!

Muum said...

years ago, we were renters... and lived across the street from the mayor! He very nicely came over one day and asked if we would mind if he sprayed our dandelions while he was spraying his. but your pic shows a LOT of dandelions, so I don't know if that plan would work for you.

Kylee said...

Town Mouse ~ He did mow right after I took that picture, but a lot had already gone to seed and the shorter ones don't get cut, even with the blade set low. Dandelions are survivors!

Sylvana ~ Yep, this is scary. We're just trying to keep control in our own yard and hopefully will be able to keep up. It's so hard when you're talking about properties the size of ours and our neighbor's.

JulenaJo ~ We've used Preen in the veggie garden before. It's been awhile since we've used it though. The flower beds are pretty heavily mulched, so that helps. I worked some ground up over the weekend for planting flower seeds when the dandelion carpet got mowed. Thankfully, dandelion seedlings are pretty easy to recognize, unless you mistake them for gazanias, which I have done! LOL

Dave ~ I think it's hard to imagine this when we're talking acres in terms of area covered. We have an acre, our neighbor has two.

Mowing while yellow is good, but one day after mowing, all the shorter-stemmed ones are in bloom. You can't mow every day. :-(

You must have different clover than we do, because our clover stays green all summer long. No bare spots, unless the entire yard goes dormant due to no rain. I didn't know that clover added nitrogen. I'll pass that information on to my husband!

The bees do love it, and I have to be careful when walking in the yard, because I'm allergic to bee stings and I LOVE walking barefoot in the grass!

Kylee said...

Muum ~ You're right. Properties are too large to offer, or we would!

Connie said...

My sympathies! The wind planted a lot of these in my flower beds this year and I just do the best I can to weed them out.
BTW, that is an awesome photo!

Tyra in Vaxholm said...

If you can't beat them join them...enjoy their beauty, eat them or make some wonderful sparkling wine :-)

Tyra

Becca's Dirt said...

I wish I had an idea but I don't. Do you have allergy's too? Nice picture. Looks like a postcard.

Becca

Jeph said...

While I know we don't all like them in our yards, that sure is a pretty view!

I thought I was being smart (now that I'm a yard owner) and plucking all the yellow heads off last week, before they went to seed, and just leaving them by the plant to dry up. Well APPARENTLY even after picked, many of them still went from a pretty yellow flower to a puffy seed head - uh oh!

Msrobin said...

Wish I had a good solution for you, but it looks like got a lot of answers! We came home from vacation to find our neighbors yard filled with TALL dandelion seedheads. Now that's trouble just waiting to happen! Once we cut our grass, I guess they felt guilty, and promptly went out to mow the mess down. Yeah, that'll help! LOL

MyMaracas said...

I'm facing exactly the same situation. I have the same level of infestation you show here, and I don't want to spray poison over three acres of yard to get rid of them. I love them in the spring, but once they go to seed they just look awful.

Michelle at Rambling Woods says there is some kind of corn-based spray you can use, but I haven't found it yet. Good luck.

PS - have you considered dandelion winemaking? You'll still have weeds, but you won't care. ;-)

Harriet said...

Dandelion Greens -- I can't imagine killing them with chemicals. What a waste!

Eat them. They have a ton of Vitamin A, as well as some Vitamin C, Calcium, and Iron.

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