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Use your weeds! They're food and medicine.

 
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Throughout this last week, I was thinking about the good times I had last summer...

Meeting up with my friends all over the mountains, foraging and wildcrafting.

2020 didn't hurt me too bad because I knew what weeds to eat LOL

Last summer, I hiked parts of Colorado with my gluten-sensitive assistant. Lol made her keep a lookout for cattail. Then before our hiking adventures were over, I made her a yummy gluten-free pie. Nature is literally the gift that keeps on giving. Let me know if I should share my cattail pie recipe.

I've seen advertisements for dandelion root tea, mullein leaf, and horsetail recently. Many people have claimed that just these few weeds are good for your liver, kidney, lung, and overall health. Maybe we should change our feelings about weeds, huh?



What weeds did your parents and grandparents despise the most that actually turned out to be a good thing?

I'll go first: dandelions.
 
pollinator
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Bindweed.

I'll admit, it's an annoying one to find in the garden. But it has also been found to fight cancer. I've never treated a human patient with it, but when my cat was diagnosed with lymphoma and given a month to live, I started her on a combination of herbs, including bindweed. She survived a full year, and seemed mostly pain-free up until the very end.
 
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Two come to mind that are considered lawn weeds - wild strawberry and prunella/self-heal. I like them a lot better than just a plain grassy lawn!
 
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I'm in the learning stages of using wild plants as food and medicine. Time constraints have made it a slow venture. It would help if I'd stay off this site lol!

Last Christmas I purchased two of the best books on the subject and gifted my Dad with them. He can be obnoxious, so I didn't know what his reaction would be. Per my request, he waited til Christmas to open the packages, and then called me.

He then gave me a gift as well; he told me that his own father, who grew up in the mountains of Virginia, had foraged in the spring. I never knew I had foraging in my blood lol! How cool. We shared some really good laughs about Grandpa's foraging adventures. I'd have never known that stuff had I not sent him those books. Wish I already knew even half of what Grandpa knew about foraging.

I told Dad that Grandpa would be proud of us for including foraging in our lives and Dad agreed. These feelings are things that can't be bought...
 
M James
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Marisa Lee wrote:Two come to mind that are considered lawn weeds - wild strawberry and prunella/self-heal. I like them a lot better than just a plain grassy lawn!



When I was a kid, I found what looked like a tiny strawberry, so I picked one and took it to Mom. Grandma and Grandpa were due to arrive in a few hours and she told me to ask Grandpa when they arrived. I took Grandpa to where I had found it, and his reaction still makes me chuckle.

He immediately went to the patch of wild strawberries and said, "mmmmm, those are strawberries!! Mmmm!", and excitedly began stuffing his face lol! He knew all kinds of stuff, including how to accurately predict the weather just by observation.

Wish our yard was full of those cute little strawberries. Sigh...the sweet memories of days gone by...

BUT, we are gonna make even more sweet summer memories! Let the goid times ROLL lol!

Edit to add: the strawberry foraging Grandpa was my maternal Grandpa, so I have foraging in my blood on both sides of the house lol!

Truth be told, we probably all do, but the knowledge didn't get passed down because modern convenience took over.
 
Marisa Lee
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M James wrote:

Marisa Lee wrote:Two come to mind that are considered lawn weeds - wild strawberry and prunella/self-heal. I like them a lot better than just a plain grassy lawn!



When I was a kid, I found what looked like a tiny strawberry, so I picked one and took it to Mom. Grandma and Grandpa were due to arrive in a few hours and she told me to ask Grandpa when they arrived. I took Grandpa to where I had found it, and his reaction still makes me chuckle.

He immediately went to the patch of wild strawberries and said, "mmmmm, those are strawberries!! Mmmm!", and excitedly began stuffing his face lol! He knew all kinds of stuff, including how to accurately predict the weather just by observation.

Wish our yard was full of those cute little strawberries. Sigh...the sweet memories of days gone by...

BUT, we are gonna make even more sweet summer memories! Let the goid times ROLL lol!

Edit to add: the strawberry foraging Grandpa was my maternal Grandpa, so I have foraging in my blood on both sides of the house lol!

Truth be told, we probably all do, but the knowledge didn't get passed down because modern convenience took over.



You are right, I'm sure we all do. For me, wild strawberries are culturally important, honored as our first fruit of the year. I'm living in the traditional territory of my ancestors, so I know these plants have sustained countless generations in my family, *and* I also have European ancestry - on that side, my paternal grandma was a gardener but she also included wild plums and chokecherries in her canning. The stand of chokecherries near her old house isn't doing so well, but there are others further out, on the edge of the woods. The plums are still in the same spot out past the barn, and they're really good. Last year they were the sweetest I've ever tasted them. On a bad year, they don't have time to ripen before a frost. I think it's cool to gather those same wild foods in the same places she did.
 
M James
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Marisa Lee wrote:

M James wrote:

Marisa Lee wrote:Two come to mind that are considered lawn weeds - wild strawberry and prunella/self-heal. I like them a lot better than just a plain grassy lawn!



When I was a kid, I found what looked like a tiny strawberry, so I picked one and took it to Mom. Grandma and Grandpa were due to arrive in a few hours and she told me to ask Grandpa when they arrived. I took Grandpa to where I had found it, and his reaction still makes me chuckle.

He immediately went to the patch of wild strawberries and said, "mmmmm, those are strawberries!! Mmmm!", and excitedly began stuffing his face lol! He knew all kinds of stuff, including how to accurately predict the weather just by observation.

Wish our yard was full of those cute little strawberries. Sigh...the sweet memories of days gone by...

BUT, we are gonna make even more sweet summer memories! Let the goid times ROLL lol!

Edit to add: the strawberry foraging Grandpa was my maternal Grandpa, so I have foraging in my blood on both sides of the house lol!

Truth be told, we probably all do, but the knowledge didn't get passed down because modern convenience took over.



You are right, I'm sure we all do. For me, wild strawberries are culturally important, honored as our first fruit of the year. I'm living in the traditional territory of my ancestors, so I know these plants have sustained countless generations in my family, *and* I also have European ancestry - on that side, my paternal grandma was a gardener but she also included wild plums and chokecherries in her canning. The stand of chokecherries near her old house isn't doing so well, but there are others further out, on the edge of the woods. The plums are still in the same spot out past the barn, and they're really good. Last year they were the sweetest I've ever tasted them. On a bad year, they don't have time to ripen before a frost. I think it's cool to gather those same wild foods in the same places she did.



How awesome! You have some real treasures in your life for sure, with the work your family did and all of those memories. You are blessed!
 
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