Take a gander at these beauties. Note, especially, how large the roots are compared to the amount of leaf! I used a pitch fork to get these out of the ground. You sort of have to if you want to get much, and of course you never get the whole root. Which means you get more from the same plant next year, of course!
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Well that makes my frugal Scots heart happy!
We use this as a sort of appertif, putting about 6-8 drops in a small glass of water and taking before meals is excellent for the stomach. It ensures good digestive juices this way, which in turn lets you digest and then absorb all the nutrition from your meal.
Interestingly, using dandelion this way is good for aging bones. One theory holds that its because your calcium goes where it should, so the bones are strengthened. Other people swear that it helps things like bone spurs - I suppose by the same action. Because it is healing and nourishing to the kidneys, there may also be a Vit D absorption aspect. I'm theorizing here, of course, because it's not like anyone really knows HOW it works.
If dandelion appeals to you, I'll trust you to do your own research***, but in general, it strengthens the liver, the kidneys, the gall bladder, the heart, the digestive system, has a positive effect on mood, relieves PMS, prevents cluster headaches, helps bone spurs, aching joints, weak bones, normalizes weight (up or down), is a preventative and part of the treatment of bladder infections, gout... oh and it's an excellent hangover remedy.
Garble - I love this word. It's the term we use for getting our herbs ready for storage, much more fun than "processing", don't you think? In this case, I let the plants sit for a few hours so the soil on the roots dried a bit. I then brushed them off, gently so as not to lose any of the outer skin. I don't like to rinse, because I want the soil bacteria, but it's no crime if you do. Just use non-chlorinated water. Then I chopped them fairly small, along with the leaves, put them in a jar and covered them with vodka. The tincture will be ready to use in 6 weeks.
Autumn and spring best time of year to do your dandying, so go out there and get those fat roots!