Harvesting maštíŋča phuté (Buffalo berries, Soap berries, or Shepherdia argentea) is messy business. Due to the thorns on the shrubs, and the difficulty of picking them, the traditional harvesting method on the prairies is to lay a dropcloth underneath the plant, and (gently) beat a branch to shake loose any ripe berries. As you canContinue reading “Cleaning Buffalo Berries”
When you see the first strawberry flowers of the year, you know the berries aren’t too far behind! This picture is from early spring. Wild Strawberries, Fragaria spp., wažúšteča, are one of my favorites. They are indigenous to boreal forests around the same latitude all over the northern hemisphere. In addition to indigenous North AmericanContinue reading “Wasžúšteča Wanáȟča: Strawberry Flower”
Here’s a baby gooseberry bush that I rescued from death by lawnmower, and replanted in a safer place. Isn’t it adorable? While Wičhágnaška hú (Ribes missouriense, or Missouri gooseberry bushes) are fairly common around here, they’re a pretty under-appreciated fruit. Most people can’t identify them by sight, and don’t think much about mowing them down.Continue reading “Baby Gooseberry Bush – Wičhágnaška hú”
Seen on a plant walk for the Culture Day at Selfridge Public Schools. I led walks around the school grounds for groups of students from different grade levels. Although they all knew how to identify a chokecherry plant from the presence of ripe cherries, few of them could identify it based on the leaf orContinue reading “Chokecherry flowers”
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.