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  • Writer's pictureEllie Roden

Weeds are flowers, too.

Updated: Feb 8, 2019

A. A.Milne said, "Weeds are flowers too, once you get to know them." How very true! I began to get to know weeds many years ago when I started pressing flowers as a hobby. I started paying attention to the interesting shapes, textures and colors of sheep sorrel, rabbit’s foot clover, sleepy catchfly and many other weeds along the roadsides and in meadows. Now, every spring, summer and fall, I seek out my favorite 'weeds', press them, and use them in pressed flower creations. I don’t really consider them weeds at all.

So how does one distinquish between a flower and a weed? I decided to look to the writers and lexicographers for the answer. Doug Larson wrote, "A weed is a plant that has mastered every survival skill except for learning how to grow in rows." "A weed is but an unloved flower." says Ella Wheeler Wilcox. One dictionary gave 2 definitions of "weed". 1.Any undesirable or troublesome plant, especially one that grows profusely where it is not wanted 2. A valueless plant growing wild, especially one that grows on cultivated ground to the exclusion or injury of the desired crop.

Hmmm... It's a very subjective matter. Consider Queen Anne's Lace, a plant on the noxious weed list in most of the states in our country. It is invasive and considered by the USDA as a serious pest in pastures and a threat to recovering grasslands. Yet, the intracacies of this weed are really quite extraordinary and beautiful. Supposedly named for Queen Anne of Great Britain, it is so called because the flower resembles lace. and the dark red spot in the center is thought to represent a blood droplet where Queen Anne pricked herself with a needle while making lace. Queen Anne's Lace is very easy to press and is a great accompaniment for many other flowers. When put on a dark background it is very striking by itself. From my perspective, this noxious, unwanted plant is a very beautiful flower.

This spring, go outside and get to know a weed. It just might become a flower!

Queen Anne's Lace by Vermont Pressed Flowers
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