Dandelions are one of the most recognizable plants throughout the world. A hardy perennial that are well-established growers worldwide, dandelions have deep roots and grow throughout the year in many climates.
I've seen various ways to get rid of dandelions - pouring boiling water at the roots, pouring vinegar at the roots, burning them with a blow torch- but I have my preferred method. I've noticed that big, fat earthworms love living around the roots of dandelions, and since I perfer not to harm the worms, I don't use any of the above methods. When I need to get rid of dandelions, I've learned that hand pulling each one is the best method. The tricks are to get as much of the root as possible, pull them when they are young, and pull them before they go to seed and spread.
There are lots of tools available specifically for dandelion removal. I use a sturdy trowel or my trusty Dewit weeding tool.
After finding the weed you'd like to pull, isolate the top of the taproot, where the root top is flush with the ground.
Insert your trowel or weeding tool right next to the rood.
Push straight down, or slightly away from the plant. If you push down in toward the root, you may cut through and break the root, making it harder to remove the entire root system.
Once you're down several inches, start to gently loosen the root system.
Ideally, you will remove the entire taproot, with the veins and all. And no harm done to the happy worms!
Join me next week while I share a medicinal way to use the roots.