How many of you used to look for those white puffballs as a kid? Those mysterious used-to-be dandelions with fuzzy heads that mysteriously appeared every year – sprouting up in lawns most everywhere.
I did. I was never disappointed.
I’d gently pick one…carefully…at the base of the stem…and then blow the fluffy hairs all over the place. Or run around and wave it back and forth until the fluff was gone.
If I was really lucky I found a perfect one, all hairy things (as I called them) still attached. It didn’t go over too well with my parents who were trying to rid the yard of dandelions.
Those are the seeds. Stop! Those are the seeds!
There are plenty of dandelions where I live now and nobody would care if I were to resurrect such rebellious behavior from childhood. I don’t think it is listed as a prohibited activity in the long list of condo Rules and Regulations.
However, now…I have a healthier respect for the natural progression of all things nature – as well as the fact that running through the woods waving an old dandelion would not be nearly as easy and carefree as it used to be.
I’d rather take its picture…
It got me thinking…what is a dandelion called when it gets to this stage of life…besides “old dandelion”?
How does it get from yellow petals to white seeds?
Apparently – and unsurprisingly – I’m not the only inquiring mind that wants to know. So for those interested…Ms. Google pointed me to a demonstration of the process on (where else) YouTube.
However, I could not find a consensus about an actual name for this stage except “white seed head”…”sometimes called blowballs or clocks.”
Mmmm…I think I prefer “puffball.” It has a nicer ring to it.