Can’t beat invasives? Eat ’em!

Indicator weeds, invasive weeds

That weed with the tiny green rubbery leaves is purslane, an invasive weed that could be coming to a dinner plate near you. Photographed in my garden in southwestern Ontario (zone 6b) in August, 2014.

Got an invasive weed overtaking your garden? If you’re a glass-half-full kind of person, there are a couple of reasons why that might not be such a bad thing. First, weeds are actually great communicators. If you’ve got two or three kinds of weeds that thrive way more vigorously than any other kind, they’re likely indicator weeds. If you can find out what’s making them so happy you’ll have a better idea of what may not be so great with your soil. (Read more about what weeds can tell you about your garden in And Then The Weed Said…). And now Awkward Botany, one of my favourite blogs, has recently posted another reason to look at an invasive plant in a whole new light–as your next new course for dinner.

Eating The Invasives is a quick and helpful read about what makes an invasive species invasive as well as an introduction to Invasivore.org. The post includes links to recipes for Garlic Mustard Ice Cream, Honeysuckle Simple Syrup, Strawberry-Goldenrod Pesto, and, my favourite, Purslane Relish.

What better way to spend a moment on a blustery winter evening than to imagine what Strawberry-Goldenrod Pesto tastes like and doing more than just pulling up that perpetual patch of purslane in your flowerbed next summer. Now you can pickle it! Thank you, Awkward Botany.

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