Dandelion 1, Mom 0

There she was, running at me, brimming with youthful exuberance.

And there I was, my fingernails caked in dirt, my mouth forming some exaggerated version of Edvard Munch’s The Scream.

The culprit? A dandelion clutched in her tiny fist as she ran at me, grin spreading across her little face.

“Mommy, get ready to blow!” she yelled.

My “Noooooo” seemed to come out in a deep rumble, like a movie being played back in slow motion.
I used to wonder how you could go to bed one night, content in your lush green lawn, and wake up the next morning to a sea of yellow weeds.
Now I know.
My daughter and I recently watched one of those gorgeous Disney Nature documentaries on how intelligent plants make use of the insects that visit them to pollinate the world.
But I dare say the dandelion is the smartest plant on planet Earth. Where others have to trick the likes of bees and ants to spread their seed, the taraxacum (as its known in gardening circles) pulls out the big guns.

The plant has made itself absolutely irresistible to anyone under 4 feet tall.

There isn’t a yellow-headed dandelion that a 7-year-old doesn’t see as prime pickings for a game of “Mama had a baby and its head popped off” (which sounds so much sinister now that I’m decades past third grade).
There isn’t a white ball of fluff that doesn’t call out for a breath of sweet chicken nugget and mac and cheese scented air to send it dancing in the breeze.
And so it was on Sunday afternoon that I crouched over my lawn, hands caked in dirt, a pile of freshly pulled weeds at my side, and faced a 7-year-old’s dreams of making little white seedlings do a fairy dance in the air with abject horror.

Dandelion 1. Mom 0.

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  1. How dare you say anything bad about wishy dandelions? Don't you know they deliver wishes? They are like fairy kisses. Sheesh.

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