My Favorite Weeds

It's that time of year (depending upon where you live, this post could be a little early!) when my favorite weeds, Queen Anne's lace and Wild Chicory, are popping up alongside of roads, in fields & generally anywhere there's untended dirt.

One of my favorite flowers (if not favorite ) is Queen Anne's Lace. It was named after Queen Anne, who was adept at lacemaking. Many of the flowers have reddish/ purple blooms in the center and it's said that it's a drop of Queen Anne's blood from pricking her finger while making lace.

Queen Anne's lace is really special to me & reminds me of summertime, visiting my dad in Illinois, where the sides of the roads are covered in Queen Anne's lace & wild chicory. The field across from our family's longtime summer cottage/ lakehouse is filled with them & I used to pick them when I was little with my grandma & cousins. My dad actually moved into the cottage about 10-12 years ago & so we still go there every summer. (This is the house I'm always working on, kitchen here.) Here's the table set last summer with some fresh Queen Anne's Lace & some of my Grandma Maestranzi's china:

It doesn't last long when you bring it inside, but it's worth it to me. And, my other favorite "weed" is wild chicory (below).
I can't get over its color & again, it just gives me this nostalgic feeling whenever I see it. An herbal tea of it, taken a couple of times a day, is said to help your metabolism according to old herbal lore. I used to love picking the flowers & drying them out for the tea, but to be honest, I wasn't really into the tea & enjoyed making it & the pretty packaging for it more than I did drinking it. I think I still have a a 15-year old homemade box of it somewhere. hahah

(image from here)
Anyway, if you haven't glanced at the roadsides lately, take a look. There are so many beautiful "weeds." The best part is, we're going to Illinois in August for a couple of weeks and just as the flowers start to fade here in Virginia, they'll be in full bloom there. Can't wait!!

And don't forget how much of life this quote can be applied to:

"What is a weed? A plant whose virtues have never been discovered."
-Ralph Waldo Emerson.




Maria Killam said...

Lauren, that is so beautiful (I have an image for you to add, I'll send it to you in a minute), such a great idea for a post!

Jennifer said...

I love Queen Anne's Lace, too! It reminds my of my grandmother - she could always see the virtue in weeds. I recently picked some from behind an Auto Zone ...

Anonymous said...

I love these! I had no idea that the purple flowers were chicory, nor that they could be made into tea. I was on a 5-day bike trip through Virginia a few weeks back and saw FIELDS and FIELDS of both of these flowers - they took my breath away. Thanks for sharing!

Southern Aspirations said...

I too admit to loving this "weed." But after all, isn't a weed just a plant growing where you don't want it to grow? So if it's growing where you want it, enjoy the flower!

paula said...

who knew a weed could be so beautiful!

LindsB said...

I love Queen Anne's Lace too! Its such a great reiminder that summer is here- I used to LOVE picking it as a kid and brining a bunch home to my mom.

Pony Girl said...

Nice post! I like weeds, too, especially wild daisies. The Queen Anne's lace is a bit rare around here, I think it's too wet of a climate, but I saw some in the mountains over the 4th of July. I think it might be toxic to horses so I'm glad it doesn't grow around our pastures, although it'd be pretty! ;)

Velvet and Linen said...

Who knew that I liked weeds?
Your Queen's Lace looks so pretty and feminine on your table.
I love how you point out beauty in the most simple places.


Catherine@Simply Natural said...

What a lovely quote!
I'm glad that Christian had a great party too!

Oliveaux said...

The weeds in my garden never look this beautiful! Ax

Kathy said...

I'm right with you the Queen Anne's lace and the Chickory...Nothing better then going for a country ride and taking it all in...Happy summer my friend! xoxo~Kathy@ Up-North Mornings..

Alison said...

I love weeds too! I just picked some Queen Anne's Lace yesterday. Its in my window in an old glass vinegar bottle. So pretty. I had a hard time picking it, because I wanted to continue to enjoy it in the yard! Check out my blog, there's a pic at the end of one of the posts you will like.

Meg said...

I've always loved that weed, but never knew the name of it. Queen Anne's Lace, such a pretty name.

White Flower Farmhouse said...

What a great post! Isn't Queen Anne's lace the best?

I just picked a couple of huge bunches from our neighbors' farm before he mowed. He looked at me like I was crazy when I came flying out of my door barefoot at the sound of the mower and frantically waved him down! So worth it.

Thanks for mentioning the story behind the dark spot in the flower. Love it!