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10 Weeds Worth Growing

 

This weed is not only beautiful, but many enjoy having it around as well.

Ground Ivy [Glechoma hederacea]:

Companion plant for: Tomatoes, peppers, cucumbers and their relatives (squash, melons), broccoli, brussels sprouts, cauliflower.

Attracts/hosts: Unknown.

Repels: Cabbage worms, cucumber worms and beetles, tomato horn worms and other detrimental insects.

Edibility: Ground ivy has long been used in traditional medicine for issues such as inflammation of the eyes, tinnitus, as well as a gentle stimulant, diuretic, astringent and overall tonic. It can be used in herbal tea and is high in vitamin C.

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The purple flowers in this picture are wild vetch*. Vetch is a wonderful green manure and cover crop. As you can see from this picture though, it can grow quite tall so it is best to allow it to flourish in between crops.

Wild vetch (Vicia Americana):

Companion plant for: Pepper and tomato plants, brassica (cabbage, mustard, broccoli), other plants needing high nitrogen. This legume fixes nitrogen in the soil.

Atrracts/hosts: Provides ground cover for predatory beetles.

Edibility: Some species of vetch may be poisonous, so itís best not to eat any form.

Avisory: Vetch is best used as a green cover crop. Allow it to grow until two weeks before planting and then till the vetch into the soil (although it can also be grown alongside plants from the brassica family to provide additional nitrogen and maintain moisture in the soil.)

*There are many varieties of vetch.
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As you can see, many common weeds have more to them than meets the eye. Get to know the weeds in your garden and listen to what they are telling you about the condition of your soil. They have much to offer in terms of creating a healthy garden or meal!

Related posts:
8 Garden Projects for Kids
Vegan Organic Fertilizers for Spring
Dreaming of Spring 12 Veganic Gardening Tips!

Ground Ivy Photo by: Dizzyslover

Read more: Diet & Nutrition, Eco-friendly tips, Environment, Food, General Health, Green, Health, Home, Household Hints, Lawns & Gardens, Life, Natural Pest Control, Natural Remedies, Nature, Nature & Wildlife, Outdoor Activities, Surprising uses for ..., Vegan, Vegetarian, ,

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Alisa Rutherford-Fortunati

Gentle World is a vegan intentional community and non-profit organization, whose core purpose is to help build a more peaceful society, by educating the public about the reasons for being vegan, the benefits of vegan living, and how to go about making such a transition. For more information about vegan food and other aspects of a vegan lifestyle, visit the Gentle World website and subscribe to our monthly newsletter.

371 comments

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12:53AM PST on Nov 30, 2014

Thank you!

3:12AM PDT on Sep 19, 2014

Thank you :)

2:48AM PDT on Sep 3, 2014

ty

5:13AM PDT on Sep 1, 2014

Just skimmed through all 368 comments and fascinated that only one (other) person called you on the uses of purslane.

What did you MEAN to write where the computer printed "gastrula intentional gastro-intestinal disorders"?

2:58AM PDT on Aug 26, 2014

This was a 'hit & miss' of an article, as only a few of these are tasty and common. The inclusion of vetch was really weird, as it's considered a cover crop only.

I LOVE purslane and the even better lamb's quarters, which wasn't mentioned, is widely dispersed, and very easy to distinguish. These are among Spring's earliest and most beneficial pot herbs.

Pull lamb's quarters when no more than 12" high, long before it sets flower buds. Rinse it well, chop into 2" to 3" long pieces, and STEAM it very gently. When it turns from greyish-green to a distinctly green hue, it's likely done. Lavish it w/unsalted butter w/a light sprinkle of sea salt and oink out! It's FAR better than spinach, and has NO oxalic acid!

Go to http://www.veggiegardeningtips.com/surprising-lambs-quarters/ for a good overview w/photos.

5:46AM PDT on Sep 7, 2013

Thank you for sharing.

5:39AM PDT on Sep 7, 2013

Rabbits are not the only pet that enjoys dandelion, tortoises do too :) I've always known ground ivy as creeping Charlie, and I also did not know it had medicinal uses. Thanks!

1:42AM PDT on Aug 9, 2013

None of these weeds really grow in my suburb but I do have a lot of ground Ivy, native violets (also edible), dandelion and clover growing as weeds!

There are others, including cobbler's pegs/farmer's friends (their seeds are high in omega 3 fatty acids), nasturtiums (leaves and flowers can be eaten), sowthistle (flowers look similar to dandelion), and wood sorrel. Try google images!

3:57PM PDT on Jun 22, 2013

Thanks for the info!

4:08AM PDT on Jun 9, 2013

Thank you Alisa, for Sharing this!

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