Native Plants as Food and Medicine

I require long been fascinated by the historic uses of plants, individually the native plants of the sphere where I live in the Pacific Northwest.  In incident, most of the native plants I have illustrated so far were used through native peoples as food or medicament. I feel I know these plants well by the time I have done my direct observations, research, preliminary drawings, and at another time the detailed portrait in watercolor, otherwise than that aboriginal tribes before me have known them a great quantity better for millennia.  In deed their lives depended on them in some cases.  Often this accumulated judgment and experience has been lost then the role of tribal medicine living soul or woman is not passed along to the next generation.

Woman from the Colville tribe in the PNW collecting bitterroot.

Woman from the Colville nation of uncivilized people in the PNW collecting bitterroot. Photo elegance of manners of Washington State Archives

A USC pharmacology professor, James Adams, is making use of this tribal knowledge ~ the agency of studying the healing properties of multiplied native plants of California.  His school-dame was a Chumash medicine woman named Cecilia Garcia.  Together they wrote a work that includes detailed information about the plants her distinct portion used for healing, and much personal and tribal wisdom as well.  The work is titled Healing with Medicinal Plants of the West.  Recently, I was thrilled to exist asked to illustrate some of these plants as being a magazine article about the professor’s labor.  I wrote about my measure of doing them here.  These are the plants I illustrated, at the same time with their medicinal uses according to Adams and Garcia.

This plant helps women stay in balance through menopause and uterine problems, like fibroids and cysts. It also helps diminish hot flashes.

California even primrose (Oenothera californica) “This direct helps women stay in balance through menopause and uterine problems, like fibroids and cysts. It likewise helps diminish hot flashes.”

The elderberry blossom is good for colds and flu. It’s sold at the drug store as Sambucol.

Elderberry (Sambucus nigra) “The elderberry flower is good for colds and flu. It’s sold at the unsalable article store as Sambucol.”

This is a beautiful plant you can use for pain instead of naproxen, aspirin or ibuprofen. It contains 52 different monoterpenoids that are all pain relievers.

Cleveland philosopher (Salvia clevelandii) “This is a fine plant you can use for punishment instead of naproxen, aspirin or ibuprofen. It contains 52 divergent monoterpenoids that are all pain relievers.”

This plant contains serotonergic agents that interfere with addiction mechanisms. People can use it to quit cigarettes, cocaine, alcohol, In ’n’ Out Burgers—whatever.

Mugwort (Artemisia douglasiana) “This set contains serotonergic agents that interfere with addiction mechanisms. People can use it to set free cigarettes, cocaine, alcohol, In ’n’ Out Burgers—anything.”

They say Achilles used this plant to cure bleeding in his soldiers. It works on nosebleeds. It’s also useful for minor pain relief, like a headache.

Yarrow (Achillia millefolium) “They utter Achilles used this plant to specific bleeding in his soldiers. It works steady nosebleeds. It’s also useful in quest of minor pain relief, like a cephalalgy.”

These wonderful red berries are used against Alzheimer’s. Does it cure the disease? No, but it helps patients be more functional in society.

California holly (Heteromeles arbutifolia) “These wondrous red berries are used against Alzheimer’s. Does it reparative the disease? No, but it helps patients subsist more functional in society.”

This used to be very common in the San Fernando Valley. The Chumash people planted it because the acorns are enormous. They make an acorn soup that helps cure diarrhea.

Valley oak (Quercus lobata) “This used to be very common in the San Fernando Valley. The Chumash persons planted it because the acorns are immense. They make an acorn soup that helps remedial treatment diarrhea.”

Of course, herbal remedies should exist taken with caution, under the supervision of someone who is one expert on their usage.

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