Saturday, October 1, 2011

Of Stink Bugs and Dandelions

Blog Interruption: Of Stink Bugs and Dandelions

Last entry began the weeklong stink bug invasion, that diverts countless waking hours to soapy water drownings and the vacuuming of thousands of these curious creatures. It is both sad and satisfying, managing the hoards of shelter seeking bugs. I find myself pondering if they might hold the cure for cancer or some other miracle we’ve been seeking.

Like the much maligned dandelion that we just cant’ get rid of, try as we might, the stink bugs seem to multiply after each attempt to clear them from our lives.

We have devised various poisons for dandelion extinction, chemicals which have proven to be carcinogens. And current research now shows that the dandelion is, in fact anti-tumorigenic, as well as a blood sugar regulator, a digestive aid, support for the upper respiratory system, and a potassium enhancing diuretic useful for hypertension. It was considered blood medicine by native peoples, and is used in treating obstructions of the gall bladder, liver, kidneys, pancreas and spleen. It is used for literally dozens of disorders. Most of the plant is edible, and it is considered to be one of the 5 most nourishing vegetables ! We would do well to harvest this free and prolific plant for its gifts. I use dandelion root as a foundation for nearly every medicinal tea I make, including my soon to be famous Super Sassafras Tea. It lives up to it’s Greek name Taraxacum: Taraxos “disorder” and akos “remedy”, a remedy for disorders.

As we now scramble to decimate the stinkbug population, we might consider searching for their usefulness and begin harvesting them for something good, rather than introducing new poisons to get rid of them. Doesn’t everything that lives on earth have an inherent value? Perhaps someone will commit research to discovering what special qualities and possibilities may come from the autumn stinkbug gatherings. When something is as prolific and persistent in getting our attention as the stinkbug and the dandelion, perhaps we would do well to listen.


  1. At minimum, let's coin a band in their honor: "Dandelion and the Stinkbugs, featured in a radical fall line-up, will open at the Clarke County Fair this Sunday. Their hit single, Hold on For Dear Life, has topped the charts for a second straight week."