Clover, crocus, violet, thistle. Do any of these names ring a bell? What about dandelion? Ok, now you get the picture. Yep, we’re talking wildflowers. No, they are not showy, over-the-top fragrant, or voluptuous like roses and tulips. But it’s time to let these gentle giants grow! Learn how they can add charm, colour, love and even nutrients to your life.
Dandelions, violets and clover are some of the very first flowers we’re exposed to as kids. Available, free and just about anywhere, these tiny florals make great gifts whether you’re 6 or 86. Thanks to creative teachers, urban gardeners and wildcrafters, wildflowers keep getting front and centre treatment come spring. Along with seasonal grasses, they can be made into rustic flower arrangements for your home, crafted into adult or child type whimsical flower crowns, as well as jaw-droppingly beautiful bridal bouquets.
The oil of wildflowers can be expressed and used for a variety of beauty and healthcare products. Bottled essential oils can be mixed with a base like jojoba, coconut or argan oil to make all-natural body lotions, perfumes, bug repellants, lip moisturizers and massage oils, as well as adding sweet aromas to homemade cleaning products. If you don’t like the feel of oils on your body, consider using them in a diffuser and benefit from their aromatherapy – bringing the fresh clean smell of outdoors inside!
Foragers, chefs and the flower power generation have paved the way for our palettes. Contrary to popular belief, many wildflowers are not only edible, they’re delicious superfoods! For example, the much misunderstood dandelion is a powerhouse whose leaves and roots can be eaten raw in salads, sauteed for stir-fries, or processed into honey, coffee or tea. Violets and clover and also be chopped and added to salads, used to decorate cakes, and infused in ice cubes. There’s nothing like the fresh taste of your home-grown, freshly fried onions, or a homemade salad dressing made from wildflower herbs. To learn more about Canada’s edible wildflowers, visit https://gardentherapy.ca/
Photo by Steven Spassov