Tag Archives: burdock

More Irony in the Garden

While I am busy trying to kill the damn burdock root, an enterprising artist is creating a bear. I will invite them to my garden to pick the burrs out of my dogs for their next creation.

Irony in the Garden

One Man’s Weed is Another Man’s Toilet Paper

Creative Commons, thompson Rivers University

Burry Burdock Bear

Photo Courtesy of Thompson Rivers University

Artist is Susan Knox

Irony in the Garden

Conversation on a Friday at work.

Q. What are you doing this weekend?

A. We are going hiking in the hills to pick Burdock, it’s a healing medicine.

Q. What are you doing?

A. Working in my garden, trying to kill Burdock.

Burdock Flowers

From http://burdockroot.co/

 Burdock is a medicinal herb, native to Europe and Northern Asia, but also grows in the United States. It is a relative of the Feverfew, Dandelion, and many other biennial thistles in the daisy family. It’s main healing properties are found in the root.  It can purify the skin, remove blood toxins, eliminate fungi, prevent infections and is antibacterial. It can be used in detoxing.

I am trying to get rid of for its most interesting benefit. It was the inspiration for Velcro. After taking his dog for a walk one day in the early 1940s, George de Mestral, a Swiss inventor, became curious about the seeds of the burdock plant that had attached themselves to his clothes and to the dog’s fur. The result of his studies was Velcro.

I am a natural gardener. Killing it means pouring salt on it. It took about 10 lbs. of salt. I have a lot of Burdock.


One Man’s Weed Is Another Man’s Toilet Paper

Been working hard in  the garden after all this rain, trying to get the side yard weeded and mulched. It has been left too long and the weeds have been prolific. Even Sparkle is dwarfed.

I got the sweet grass beds weeded and we should be able to start harvesting and making braids  soon.  We covered three of the raised beds in newspaper and a layer of landscaping cloth and then covered it in our beautiful new bark mulch. In the 11 years we have lived here we have lost over  100 trees to pine beetle, spruce bud worm, age and the elements, namely the wind. Finally got them all bucked up and the scraps mulched in a chipper. It smells beautiful. Perfect for keeping the weeds down. I loaded all the weeds in a wheelbarrow to take them to the compost box in the goat yard.

Hard Working Farmer

Nibbles thought it was a wonderful snack. How organic, into him and out the other end  as fertilizer.

We try hard to keep the land as natural as possible. No herbicides or pesticides and we have only native plants, except for a few annuals in my flower baskets. The rest of the garden is in perennials that will survive our cold zone 3.

I do take exception to burdock because they have thistle-like flowers that get stuck in the dog’s fur but I now just weed eat them down on a regular basis. I got out my Plants of the Southern Interior to check to see that everything I had left around the beds was native and not an interloper that had blown in on  some coastal friend shoes.


I flipped by Thimbleberry (rubus parviflorus) in the book and started reading. It is native to this area and was used by the aboriginals to eat when found. The berries are not prolific and they can’t be dried or kept in grease like raspberries but the leaves were prized for lining baskets and the young shoots were used for eating raw and stews. The use that surprised me the most was that it makes an excellent biodegradable toilet paper. So next time you are hiking in the southern interior of BC, don’t worry if you need to go in the bush. Just find a thimble berry bush.

The birds are looking forward to the Saskatoon berries ripening.

Oh, yes and it’s been snowing  cottonwood.