Today I would like to talk about plants. These are some of the plants that I have found in my yard.
There are all kinds of plants, Beautiful and edible, Beautiful to look at, Beautiful and deadly, and also annoying weeds. But some of the plants you may find in your yard may not be what you think they are at first glance.
The beauty depicted to the above is commonly sold at home improvement stores but is actually a weed that is not native to the area. This weed can be invasive and intrusive as it can be beautiful. The Lantana (Lantana Camara) is an American tropic native plant. The Lantana can cause toxicity in livestock and is toxic to cats. This plant was residing in my front yard until I rooted it out, as I have cats and did not want to keep an invasive plant in my yard that may cause an eventual struggle to control regardless of it’s beauty. (Lantana – University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences, n.d.)
Plantain (Plantago Major) is a weed common to the area which grows in my yard but is something I endeavor to keep alive. Although someone desiring a perfect looking yard may not want to keep this weed around I highly encourage saving this plant even if you only keep it in a container or a space separate from your grassy areas. Plaintain is not related to the tropical fruit bearing plant, however, this plant can be utilized as a healthy salad green. Harvesting young leaves and adding them to salads or cooked dishes will add a healthy dose of Vitamin A, Biotin, and B1. While older leaves can have a nastily bitter taste new growth is much more tender and tasty. Plantain can also be used to treat common colds, diarrhea, regenerate tissue, and stimulate cellular growth. (https://www.facebook.com/HealthyAndNaturalWorld, 2019)
Wild lettuce ( lactuca virosa) grows all over the upstate and can be quite an annoying weed. But like the Plantain, it can be used for a variety of ailments. Wild lettuce can be used to treat asthma, hardening arteries, and joint pain among other things. However, there are some precautions indicated if using wild lettuce as a natural medicine according to WebMD. (WebMD Health Search, n.d.) Wild Lettuce may not be something you want to keep around in your yard as again, it can be invasive and intrusive. But I would highly encourage transplanting wild lettuce to an isolated area of your lawn or moving it to a planter as it can also be beneficial for anxiety, insomnia, cancer, and as a topical treatment for skin lesions and injuries.(Wild Lettuce (Lactuca virosa): Pain Relief, Benefits and Risks, 2018)
The Purple Haze Butterfly Bush is one of the more beautiful plants I found in my yard. When we moved in this plant was over 6 ft tall and at least 5 ft wide. These plants are extremely helpful to the ecology of any garden as they are a lovely attractant for pollinators as well as butterflies. They bloom early in the year and often flower well into the fall. I have never watered this plant however last year in the fall I did prune my bush down to 4 inches and mostly covered it with leaves.
While there was a distinctive vacancy in one of my garden areas it is beginning to grow back already and I anxiously look forward to seeing it’s beautiful plumage later this spring, just in a more manageable and less intimidating size. (How to Plant, Grow & Prune Non-Invasive Butterfly Bushes – Garden Design, n.d.)
As always, building a self-sustaining life is not easy, but adding to your knowledge of the world around you can be. So, I hope you find the inspiration and encouragement you need in this publication to begin your journey to a healthier and more beautiful self-sustaining life.
Your friendly Neighborhood Gardener/Crafter
Lantana – University of Florida, Institute of Food and Agricultural Sciences. (n.d.). Gardeningsolutions.ifas.ufl.edu.
https://www.facebook.com/HealthyAndNaturalWorld. (2019, April 25). Plantain is not Weed. It Fights Cancer, Prevents Kidney Stones, Anti-Bacterial, Anti-Parasite and More. Healthy and Natural World. https://www.healthyandnaturalworld.com/plantain-herb/
Wild Lettuce (Lactuca virosa): Pain Relief, Benefits and Risks. (2018, November 9). Healthline.
WILD LETTUCE: Overview, Uses, Side Effects, Precautions, Interactions, Dosing and Reviews. (n.d.). Www.webmd.com. Retrieved March 10, 2021, from https://www.webmd.com/vitamins/ai/ingredientmono-342/wild-lettuce
How to Plant, Grow & Prune Non-Invasive Butterfly Bushes – Garden Design. (n.d.). GardenDesign.com. Retrieved March 10, 2021, from http://www.gardendesign.com/shrubs/butterfly-bush.html