• Post Reply Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic
permaculture forums growies critters building homesteading energy monies kitchen purity ungarbage community wilderness fiber arts art permaculture artisans regional education skip experiences global resources cider press projects digital market permies.com private forums all forums
this forum made possible by our volunteer staff, including ...
master stewards:
  • Nicole Alderman
  • paul wheaton
  • Anne Miller
  • Pearl Sutton
  • Mike Haasl
  • Joylynn Hardesty
  • r ranson
  • James Freyr
  • Burra Maluca
master gardeners:
  • Steve Thorn
  • Greg Martin
  • Ash Jackson
  • thomas rubino
  • Carla Burke

pH Indicator from Black Nightshade Berries

Posts: 212
Location: Dayton, Ohio
forest garden foraging urban food preservation fiber arts ungarbage
  • Likes 1
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
In my biology class this semester at school, I am required to make a pH indicator at home from purple cabbage. If the students are unable to obtain purple cabbage, the professor gave instructions on how to make a similar pH indicator from blueberries. Since the deep purple pigment anthocyanin appears to be the active ingredient in this type of indicator, it might be possible to modify the process of making the blueberry pH indicator for use with black nightshade berries. North American black nightshade (Solanum phychanthum) grows abundantly where I live in Ohio on disturbed soil and fallow agricultural land. The purple-black berries are rich in anthocyanins and edible when fully ripe. Wait for the berries to fall to the ground or come lose from the stem with a gentle tug and for the berries to be fully black-purple before harvesting them for food or for a pH indicator. Until I can get definite permission from my professor to share the procedure for making the blueberry pH indicator, I will share a YouTube video that covers essentially the same procedure:

Because of the importance of pH balance in several applications, this indicator might be a more accurate method of gauging pH for soap making, nixtamalizing corn, water pH testing, and pickling. There might be other applications I have not thought about yet. Once the black nightshade berries ripen later this Summer, I will attempt to test the procedure in the YouTube video to see if it also works with black nightshade berries in the process of making a batch of hominy.

In other parts of North America, other related species of black nightshade also grow. They all used to be classified as Solanum nigrum, but were separated into separate species by later taxonomists. Below are some images of Solanum ptychanthum from Wikimedia Commons and a distribution map of the species from BONAP.
[Thumbnail for Solanum_ptychanthum_5437070.png]
[Thumbnail for Solanum_ptychanthum_5437071.png]
[Thumbnail for Solanum_ptychanthum_5437091.jpg]
[Thumbnail for Solanum-ptychanthum.png]
Posts: 1123
Location: Denmark 57N
fungi foraging trees cooking food preservation
  • Mark post as helpful
  • send pies
  • Quote
  • Report post to moderator
Purple sprouting broccoli works as do globe artichokes as well.
You know it is dark times when the trees riot. I think this tiny ad is their leader:
how do we get more backing of the brk?
    Bookmark Topic Watch Topic
  • New Topic