Today's good things are Burger King's 50 cent ice cream cones. I love that I can drive through and get a small sweet treat for 53 cents (including tax). It's not expensive and it's not huge, so it's not guilt inducing, and on a hot summer day it's a perfect little treat.
I've been weeding the garden again and so we have another installment of the misleadingly named Weed a Week. I discovered half a dozen odd-looking plants with yellow flowers, large heart-shaped leaves, and strange thistle/crown shaped seed pods. After some research, I determined that this weed is called Velvet Leaf (Abutilon theophrasti) or Buttonweed. It was originally brought from China to the U.S. for the purpose of making rope, but it was a commercial failure and soon became a noxious weed. It's often found in corn fields where it's quite a nuisance because it out-competes the corn for nitrogen resources in the soil.
As I found with other weeds, this weed has its own virtues. It's useful for making rope. Here's a video showing how to harvest the fibers for use. It's also edible -- the seeds may be eaten as snacks and supposedly taste like sunflower seeds. The flowers and leaves may be eaten either raw or cooked. Most useful of all, though, the velvety leaves are large and -- in a pinch -- can be used as toilet paper!
It's too late tonight to get a good picture, so I'll add some tomorrow before I ruthlessly pull them up.
|These things can grow six to eight feet tall!|
|Large velvety heart-shaped leaves|
|Interestingly shaped seed pods|
|These are the mature seed pods -- the seeds can lie |
dormant for 50 or 60 years. A very durable plant!