Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by CATO, Dec 13, 2011.
a good read
How to Make Aspirin From Bark
That is REAL back to basics.
Another good tree "source". This one for vitamin C & A as well as loads of antioxidants - white pine needle tea
You WILL want sugar in that tea. (Don't ask.)
Unless you live in southern Florida, you might want to consider stevia instead of sugar. ;-)
Stevia is good stuff. Hard to grow though, it is a very sensitive plant. Any tips?
Actually you can grow sorghum for sugar as far north as Kentucky. There are Amish communities that grow it. Sugar beets also respond well in other areas.
sorghum grows in michigan too
and theres also maple syrup and honey
I have a plant that was doing pretty darn well until my kids ate it. It's still alive, but quite a bit more spindly than it was. Stevia is hard to grow from seeds though.
Where I live in Western North Carolina Sumac grows as wild and free ranging as Poplar trees, Sycamore's, and pines, Here is an incert from a natural healing web site about many of sumac's plentiful uses. My wife actually made me lemonade this fall with the ripe berries of the sumac.
Sumac leaves and berries are classified as astringent and cooling. Certain Native American and Canadian Indian tribes used sumac to treat bladder, digestive, reproductive, and respiratory ailments; infections; injuries; stomachaches; arrow wounds; and more. The Chippewa Indians of North America made a decoction of sumac flowers to treat gas, indigestion, and other digestive upsets. The Iroquois used sumac as a laxative, diuretic, expectorant, liver aid, and in countless other applications. The powdered bark and dried berries were allegedly combined with tobacco and smoked during peace pipe ceremonies. The inner bark was also used to treat hemorrhoids.
Read more: Natural Healing: Snack on Sumac Berries
I have no ideal as to what this ''sumac'' is or used for...However the local sumac i've ran into looked like someone slapped me on the leg with a white hot iron...
Need more info on this bad boy...
Poison sumac - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
eating poison vines will KILL YOU, dont do it
I'm also in Western NC. I have Red Sumac/Staghorn Sumac growing right next to White (Poison) Sumac. You definitely have to know which one you're dealing with before you start consuming parts of them. When they are flowering, and in the Fall/Early winter, when the reddish brown berries are still on the Red Sumac, it's easy to tell the difference. At other times of the year, not so much. I've grabbed White Sumac before, when clearing brush, and it is indeed no fun. It feels like someone doused you with nitric acid.
I've made Sumac-ade before, from the berries of the Red Sumac. Needs a lot of sugar, and you need to pick the berries in the fall. I haven't tried using other parts of the plant.
White Sumac would be a great companion plant
White Sumac would make a great companion plant for barbed wire obstacle plantings on the PAW retreat: especially among low wire entanglement.
We have the ultimate companion plants for concertina wire obstacles. Opuntia (also known as nopales or paddle cactus). The pads and fruits are edible, grow with zero assistance, are quite prolific and require zero tending. A thick enough patch will stop even determined cattle. Running into a patch of this at night is zero fun.
We have the same plant in Australia.
It is a noxious weed here, called "Prickly Pear". It was a ruinous weed for the grazing industry as it acclimatised too well to Australian conditions and rendered great swathes of the countryside unuseable for grazing. It has since been controlled by the introduction of the Cactoblastis moth, and it is not so much of the problem that it used to be. The fruit is edible, but care should be taken when picking it and preparing it for consumption.
The advantage of Opuntia, being a succulent, it that it is not so easy to burn. Slashing it would be problematic if it is also covered by observation and effective aimed fire...a win-win situation for a determined defender.
Hope this helps.
"While the herb’s native locale may make it appear somewhat exotic, it has proved to be quite adaptable and capable of being cultivated in climate zones as diverse as Florida and southern Canada"
How to Grow Stevia
I've committed a lot of time to the study of poison ivy/vine because I hate the stuff with a passion. During that research, I read on several sites that poison sumac is quite rare compared to poison oak/ivy/vine and grows largely near water or in moist/wetland-type areas.
Has this been your experience (the growing near water part)?
No, actually my own experience is quite the opposite. I have two creeks, and no sumac grows near either one. I also have a wetland area, and no sumac grows there either. All of my sumac grows in relatively dry, rocky soil. It seems to quickly establish itself in recently cleared areas, and appears to propagate via its root system. I have one sumac tree that is better than six inches in diameter, though most of it is small shrub.
I suppose, given the choice, sumac might prefer more moist soil than where mine is growing. I assume that it was simply opportunity that caused it to establish itself where it did. My creeks are fairly well covered in old growth, with a pretty solid canopy. If some of that were cleared off, sumac might very well establish itself there.
Swell....now I have to worry about that stuff too. I only really paid attention if I was near streams/marshes.
I wouldn't worry too much about it. The only times that sumac has messed with me, was when I messed with it; and I have fairly substantial growths of it about my property. Each of the two times that I have been on the receiving end of sumac's wrath, I was pruning and clearing, and chose the wrong shrub to prune.
Poison Ivy, on the other hand, needs only be in the same zip code as I for me to catch it. (I apparently watch too much British TV. I just had to ask my wife what the American expression was for "Post Code" (Zip Code). I couldn't think of it to save my life. It's going to be one of those days.)
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melbo submitted a new resource:
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This is mostly for making botanicals from 1924. Its not as complete as Fenner's guide but its still a decent cross reference.
This covers how to make everything from herbal tinctures, to dyes, polish, toothpaste, adhesives, inks, cosmetics, hair dyes and much more.
Separate names with a comma.