A Daily Walk With DietPower
Walking is the best exercise for weight loss. And the things you see!
Today I found a dandelion gone to seed on Roundhill Road. In this closeup you can clearly see the silky parasail attached to each tiny brown seed in the center.
Thanks to its windborne seeds and amazingly rapid growth, the dandelion (Taraxacum officinale) is one of the most successful plants on earth. Althought it evolved somewhere in the Old World, it has spread to every continent but Antarctica. Its English name is thought to be a corruption of the French dent de lion, "lion's tooth," referring to the plant's jagged-toothed leaves.
Dandelion leaves are edible when young. They have a bittersweet flavor, something like endive, and are rich in antioxidants. My mother used to serve them in a sweet bacon-and-egg-yolk dressing—which, come to think of it, I crave right now because I haven't tasted it in 50 years. (If you know a good recipe, please
My best friend's grandmother, who, like my mother, was mostly German, swore by the health benefits of dandelion. Famously frugal, she also bragged that she could live absolutely free on the harvest from her lawn. She died just two weeks shy of her hundredth birthday. Relatives say she did it on purpose, to forestall their spending on a planned birthday bash.
Dandelion leaves are also diuretic. That's why the French call the dandelion a pissenlit (pronounced PISS-un-lee), "urinate in bed." Similarly, British folk sometimes call dandelions "pissabeds," and northern Italians refer to them as piscialletti (piss-yuh-LET-ee).
I guess it's best to eat them for breakfast.
About this page: Precisely at noon each day, I step out of my office for a 3.5-mile walk around my Connecticut neighborhood. I carry a Panasonic Lumix DMC-TX5 pocket camera with a Leica 10x optical zoom lens. My object is to make an interesting photograph of at least one thing that is different that day. I post the results here, hoping they will inspire you and your friends to walk, too. —Terry Dunkle, DietPower founder and CEO.
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All My Yesterdays
Friday, May 8: A Pack of Boston Terriers
Thursday, May 7: Underground Passage
Wednesday, May 6: White Violet
Tuesday, May 5: Singing His Heart Out
Monday, May 4: Kenny's Secret
Sunday, May 3: Monument to an Afternoon
Saturday, May 2: Gasoline Rainbow
Friday, May 1: The Duck and the Bashful Maiden
Thursday, April 30: A Poison Ivy Sandwich
Wednesday, April 29: The Very Picture of Spring
Tuesday, April 28: A Busy Bumblebee
Monday, April 27: Electric Pink
Sunday, April 26: Saturday Night Special
Saturday, April 25: An Old Oak Falls
Friday, April 24: How an Ant Sees a Daffodil
Thursday, April 23: The Nameless Brook
Wednesday, April 22: Weeding Time
Tuesday, April 21: Wet Apple Buds
Monday, April 20: Mr. Allen and the Crew Team
Sunday, April 19: Bloodroot II
Saturday, April 18: Green Jellybeans
Friday, April 17: Bloodroot
Thursday, April 16: Skunk Cabbage III
Wednesday, April 15: Find the Critter
Tuesday, April 14: Blessing of the Animals
Monday, April 13: The Crow Who Said "Wow!"
Sunday, April 12: A Quirky Church
Saturday, April 11: Self-Portrait in a Pothole
Friday, April 10: Easter flowers
Thursday, April 9: Dumb as a Squirrel
Wednesday, April 8: April Snow
Tuesday, April 7: Egg Trees, Connecticut Style
Monday, April 6: I Carry My Lunch
Sunday, April 5: A Tree in Spring
Saturday, April 4: Pigs with Drivers Licenses
Friday, April 3: Forsythia
Thursday, April 2: Skunk Cabbage II
Wednesday, April 1: Mystery of the Hanging Shoes
Tuesday, March 31: Downy Woodpecker
Monday, March 30: 300-Year-Old House
Sunday, March 29: The Broken Fence
Saturday, March 28: "You're Such a Delight"
Friday, March 27: Skunk Cabbage
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