Tuesday, 8 November 2016

Why I Grow Weeds

A weed by nowadays definition is any plant that is invasive and unwanted, however, weeds have always served a purpose (hence why Mother Nature created them) and getting rid of them can sometimes have detrimental effects on the environment.

weed holding soil in place
Weeds grow quickly, are hardy and offer certain advantages such as being fabulous ground covers, perfect for stopping soil erosion.

The flowers weeds produce often attract predatory insects which in turn eat pesty insects and this can save your fruits and vegetables from getting eaten by insects before you get a chance to enjoy them.   In other words 'weeds' and other flowering plants, such as marigolds, yarrow and Queen Ann's Lace, are natures pest control.
weeds acting as ground cover

Some plants we consider weeds have medicinal properties such as:
Fennel (not the bulb type) = promotes milk flow, anti-inflammatory, circulatory stimulant.
Plantain = anti-catarrhal, antispasmodic.
Chickweed = astringent, antirheumatic.
Dandelion = diuretic, liver tonic.
Stinging nettle = astringent, circulatory stimulant, promotes milk flow.

weeds with medicinal properties
Weeds are also a great way to get children involved in gardening because they're so easy to grow. Children will take more interest in gardening if they're able to grow things successfully and what better way to start than with weeds - which are hard to kill.  I remember as a little girl loving those little pink peak flowers and wanting to grow lots of them.

Some weeds are also in place here to stop our little dog from doing his do-dos in unwanted places ;)

This is why I grow weeds in my garden (not in the garden beds but along side them).

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