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Pokeweed (Phytolacca americana) for chop and drop????  RSS feed

 
Elissa Teal
Posts: 128
Location: Detroit, Michigan
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I have a good number of pokeweed plants on my property and I wondered if I could chop and drop them on my veggie garden. Does anyone else have pokeweed growing on their property? If so, do you compost them? What do you do with them? TIA.
 
Cj Sloane
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Location: Vermont, off grid for 24 years!
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I have soooooo many pokeweed plants. I chop & drop in place. Hard to stay on top of them. The do get very big if they get away from you. If you need organic matter I guess that's OK. You could probably compost them.

So far, no livestock have been poisoned. I assume the poultry eat and spread the berries.
 
John Elliott
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Cj Verde wrote: I assume the poultry eat and spread the berries.


Sometimes I let them grow to maturity so that I can have 'treats' for the chickens. But half the time the wild birds get to the berries first.
 
Dan Boone
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Location: Central Oklahoma (zone 7a)
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I have been using them as mulch and grass inhibitor under my recent fruit tree plantings.

See also: http://www.permies.com/t/15343/plants/Poke-sallet-salad-nutrient-accumulator
 
Rebecca Hyde
Posts: 9
Location: Woodstock, CT
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They have amazing roots, so they must mine the soil. The shoots are tasty eating in the spring at the same season as the asparagus, when they're about 4 to 6 inches high. The berries were used a lot for ink in the old days and there are various online discussions about how edible they are or aren't. The leaves of course are poisonous, from what I remember. And I've been meaning to look up the root again, I think it's a medicinal but needs to be used carefully. A nice plant, if a bit prolific and tough to eradicate when you don't really want it around.
 
Bryant RedHawk
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You can eat the young leaves, they must be boiled in three changes of water to be safe. If you see any red in the vein do not eat them. http://www.cooks.com/rec/search/0,1-0,poke_salad,FF.html Chop and drop is ok but I usually compost mine.
 
Mike Cantrell
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Location: Mid-Michigan
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I have to share my absolute favorite bit of phytolacca trivia:

Up until 2000, Allen Canning Company in Siloam Springs, AR canned and sold Poke Sallet just like any other canned vegetable.

I used to drive by Allen's all the time, since it's on the main drag through Siloam Springs (this was after 2000), and it would call foraging to mind every time.
 
Joy Oasis
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Rebecca Hyde wrote:  And I've been meaning to look up the root again, I think it's a medicinal but needs to be used carefully.  A nice plant, if a bit prolific and tough to eradicate when you don't really want it around.

  I looked it up and it is great for infections involving lymphatic system such as tonsillitis, mastitis, etc. but one has to use it in single drop amounts for the tincture. 1-10 drops a day, very max 30, if one doesn't experience mental fog or other poisoning symptoms. I was thinking, why do people even bother use herbs like that, because it can cause death, if too much is taken, but if it is very effective, it is much better than antibiotic drugs, which are also deadly in larger amounts and sometimes even in prescribed amounts. Actually that is what got me into herbs more seriously -after my son had bad reaction to the antibiotic- sudden sharp headaches, sunken black undereyes, no energy. it was scary.
 
William Bronson
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Location: Cincinnati, Ohio,Price Hill 45205
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There are too many non-poisonous plants out there for me to tolerate powered.
I chop and drop them unless they have gone too seed.
Seeds go in the trash.
 
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