Pȟaŋǧí — Sunchoke/Jerusalem Artichoke

Pȟaŋǧí. Helianthus tuberosus. Sunchoke or Jerusalem Artichoke in English. It is a cousin to the sunflower. It is not remotely related to an artichoke, and does not look or taste anything like one, so I’m not sure how it got its English name. But its Lakota name, Pȟaŋǧí, has since lent itself to many otherContinue reading “Pȟaŋǧí — Sunchoke/Jerusalem Artichoke”

Eating Your Weeds

It’s the time of year where every seed that has blown into the garden bed is popping up, as well as any weeds that I failed to eradicate last year. I’m working on learning the difference between those that have some medicinal/nutritional value and are worth keeping, and those that should be pulled before theyContinue reading “Eating Your Weeds”

Wáǧačhaŋ Čhíŋkpa Pȟežúta Káǧa — Making Medicine from Cottonwood Buds

Wáǧačhaŋ. Populus deltoides. Cottonwood. This is a very culturally important tree for the Lakota and many other Indigenous cultures. It has more uses than I will get into in this post. Today I will focus on the medicinal uses of the buds, or čhíŋkpa. (“Čhíŋkpa” specifically refers to a bud on a tree; “čhamní” isContinue reading “Wáǧačhaŋ Čhíŋkpa Pȟežúta Káǧa — Making Medicine from Cottonwood Buds”

Wáǧačhaŋ Wanáȟča Yúta — Eating Cottonwood Flowers

Wáǧačhaŋ wanáȟča kiŋ yáta oyákihi he? Can you eat cottonwood flowers? I’ve been working with cottonwood buds to make medicinal salves, but when I walked by our neighborhood trees and noticed that the buds had burst open to reveal these red flowers (technically called catkins, not flowers), I wondered if they were edible. I triedContinue reading “Wáǧačhaŋ Wanáȟča Yúta — Eating Cottonwood Flowers”

Rhubarb

This is not a native plant, but since it’s so popular here and does well in our climate, I thought it deserved its own post. While this plant is actually from Asia, it is a hardy perennial that thrives in USDA Zone 4. People from outside this region in the U.S. are often unfamiliar withContinue reading “Rhubarb”

Siberian Elm

Siberian Elm. Ulmus Pumila. The State of Minnesota Department of Natural Resources classifies it as an invasive species, noting that “[t]he tree can invade and dominate disturbed prairies in just a few years.” (see link for more info.) This fast growing, hard to eradicate tree is a real problem here, growing up under homes andContinue reading “Siberian Elm”

Čhaŋpȟáhu číkʼala (baby chokecherry plants)

I found these baby chokecherry plants poking their heads up today on my walk. I had tossed some chokecherry seeds in that area earlier this year. I don’t know if they germinated, or if these came from another source, but either way, I was glad to see them.