Health and Nutritional Benefits of Pigweed

Pigweed (Amaranthus blitoides) is also known as amaranth and it is now found on most continents except Antarctica. The plant is often considered to be an invasive weed, but like many weeds, it is quite edible and healthy to eat. This edible wild plant originated in North America and has become naturalized in Europe, Asia, Africa and South America. The plant can be found in all US States and Canadian provinces. It has such great benefits that survivalists would be doing well to recognize it and to learn of its medicinal properties. Pigweed appearance Some species of pigweed grow more than three feet in height, but Amaranthus blitoides is low growing and sprawling, seldom growing taller than a few inches tall, with the branches laying upon the ground. It sometimes forms dense mats and the stems can be over a foot in length. The leaves are small, rarely over a half-inch in length and oval-shaped. The flowers are tiny and inconspicuous. The stems usually contain some reddish coloration and the leaves are normally dark green. Pigweed in general This annual grows well in sandy soil and doesn’t like clay soils that don’t drain well and which can become compacted. It is common in waste places, along fence rows, in fields and in lawns. Some species are purposely grown as a food crop, particularly in Asia and parts of Africa. Besides the wonderful nutritional benefits, pigweed is easy to grow and all parts of the plant are edible. Native Americans primarily Continue Reading →

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Wild herbs – Terrific Tasty Tarragon

Believe it or not, there isn’t much difference between wild tarragon (Artemisia dracunculus) and the tarragon you can buy in the store. The store-bought variety is simply a specific cultivar, most often French tarragon. The fact is that all cultivars can be used in the same way and wild tarragon is a plant that grows wild through most of North America, Europe and Asia. It is occasionally called dragon wormwood because of its scientific name; dracunulus, meaning dragon. Wild tarragon in general This wild herb is found in places that get dry and that drain well, but which also get plenty of sunshine. In Montana, it is found from the lowlands of about 3,000 feet to mountainous country that is in excess of 5,000 feet. Tarragon is a perennial, bushy and hardy member of the sunflower family. Because of its hardiness, it is found from the Yukon in Canada to Southern California and east through Texas. It also grows in the midwest states. The plants are variable in size, from barely over a foot tall to about six feet in height. The leaves can get about three inches long but are quite narrow. On smaller plants, they don’t reach this length. The flowers are also tiny, seldom as broad as a fifth of an inch, most often dull yellow to yellowish-green. These produce a lot of seeds, but in some species, the seeds are infertile. Wild tarragon grows up from a rhyzomous root, rather like those of crabgrass. It can Continue Reading →

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