If you live in a warm or coastal climate, you’ve likely experienced the invasion of dollarweed (also called pennywort) in your lawn or garden. This coin-like plant, which can be found growing in lawns and gardens, is quite edible.
Dollarweed is a broad leaf weed that appears in wet areas in the landscape. It’s low to the ground, with one round leaf per stalk. The leaves can grow up to the size of a silver dollar—hence the plant’s name. It looks similar to a lily pad. Pennywort grows naturally at the edges of ponds, lakes, canals, and riverbanks.
These nutrient packed plants are widely despised by homeowners and are commonly called weeds, but throughout history many of these hearty little plants have provided people in all walks of life a wealth of tasty nutrition.
They have a chemical, like celery, that helps the aorta and blood vessels relax. They do that by increasing the amount of nitrous oxide available and that can lower blood pressure. In India, Centella has been used for that purpose for some 3,000 years. Nice of modern science to confirm it. The plant has a host of other properties as well from affecting blood cell development to wound care to reducing edema.
Don’t be afraid to learn about edible weeds and flowers you can find in your yard, but be cautious and do your research before consuming them.
Editor’s Note: The content of this article is provided for general informational purposes only. Be cautioned that some wild plants can be poisonous, and poisonous plants sometimes resemble edible plants which often grow side by side. If you are inclined to nibble some pennywort you should do two things. First, make sure you have someone who knows what they are doing identify them. There are a couple of look alikes in Florida that could confuse a novice. And, more than that, as a water-loving plants they’re quick to pick up and store pollution and bacteria or that pesticide you put on your lawn. Collect them from clean places.
To learn more about edible weeds visit EatTheWeeds.com
If you can’t beat ‘um, eat ‘um…