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Uses for elms

 
garrett lacey
Posts: 72
Location: Edmonton Alberta
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Just wondering if anyone has first hand experience using elm for any purpose. Siberian Elm is an abundant weed tree here, and American elm is a common planted tree in my city.

From what I've found through Plants for a Future, the seeds are edible and high in protein, wood is rot-resistant in water, inner bark & leaves edible. Anyone have experience cultivating mushrooms on Siberian elm?
 
Alder Burns
pollinator
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Location: northern California
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when I lived in a mixed forest in GA, I found that elm was one of the favorite browse plants for goats....they would seek it out, eat on it first and thoroughly before moving on to just about anything else.
 
Rebecca Norman
gardener
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Location: Ladakh, Indian Himalayas at 10,500 feet, zone 5
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food preservation greening the desert solar trees
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Here in Ladakh elms traditionally grew in just one region. The bark was shredded and soaked and used as shampoo or conditioner or something, back in the days before people had commercial soaps and shampoos. I've never seen it in action myself.
 
Sean Banks
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I know morel mushrooms grow around dead elms.....
 
Thea Olsen
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Location: suburbs of Chicago USDA zone 5b
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I feed the leaves to my rabbits. I feed them fresh when they're available, and dry some to feed them in the winter.
 
Hanley Kale-Grinder
Posts: 112
Location: Mountain West of USA, Salt Lake City
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I was eating the green seeds all spring. They make a good soup thickener, go well in salad, or you can just eat them by the handful. I used to curse the majestic siberian elm but now it seems pretty good to have around.
 
garrett lacey
Posts: 72
Location: Edmonton Alberta
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Just eating them straight off the tree? I was peeling the skin off the dry ones that were falling off the American elm in my front yard, and ate a few. I remember experiencing some minor throat irritation though it could have been unrelated or just in my head.

The seed seems promising as a staple if it could be collected efficiently. Perhaps by coppicing, or maybe spreading some kind of sheet to catch them.

I was inspired to ask about elms by the thread about Box Elders. Box elder and Siberian elm are the two most common 'weed trees' that grow around here, and after realizing the utility of the Box Elder, I was curious about the Siberian elm.

On a side note, has anyone else noticed the high incidence of bacterial infection on pruning wounds on elms? Almost every cut made results in soft, orange bark below the cut extending down quite some distance. I don't know what this says about the tree, but it could be a clue to something.
 
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