The Blue Asiatic Dayflower. It’s all in the way you look at it…
Question: What is a weed?
Answer: a herbaceous plant not valued for use or beauty, growing wild and rank; cumbering the ground and/or hindering the growth of superior vegetation.
This is where this little flower comes in…
I found a patch of it growing in one of my gardens today. I had never noticed it before.
The brilliant blue of its petals caught my attention and I got closer. The blue looked like little rabbit ears and the tiny yellow/white center looked like a little rabbit nose. Dew had settled onto its leaves and made it look so cool and comfortable.
I knew it must be a weed because it seemed to come from nowhere.
But it is so very lovely.
I did a little research and discovered that it is, in fact, the Blue Asiatic Dayflower, known as an ornamental pest. Its luscious blooms are transient, only a few opening at a time and each one blooming for one day only – hence, Dayflower. The petals are often said to resemble mouse ears, giving it the nickname Mouse Flower. (I’ll stick to rabbit!)
The flower or weed has been known to be both edible and medicinal and was once commonly used as pigments and dyes.
The word noxious often describes this flower, referring to its unpleasant way of hindering the growth of superior vegetation.
But it also got me thinking about who gets to decide all this about pests and noxiousness and superiority- because these same decisions seem to find their way to people, too.
In whose garden did the first Blue Asiatic Dayflower cumber the ground and create such a hindrance that it is banished to the status of weed?
I’m not so fond of the words superior vegetation.
I’m going to let my little blue rabbits take over that little patch of garden and let them have their one day – their only day – of creating eye-catching beauty.
Move over, cultivation.
There’s room for everyone on this big, glorious Earth.