Tuesday, July 24, 2012

revisiting cleome serrulata ~

I think I may have finally been able to identify this plant as: 
"Cleome serrulata (Rocky Mountain beeweed, Rocky Mountain bee-plant, spider-flower, stinking-clover, Navajo spinach.) It has been used in the southwestern U.S. as a food, medicine, or dye since prehistoric times and is one of very few wild foods still in use. As food, its seeds can been eaten raw or cooked, or dried and ground into meal for use as a mush. The leaves, flowers and shoots can be cooked and eaten as a cooked vegetable or added to cornmeal porridge. As medicine, an infusion of the plant is used to treat stomach troubles and fevers, and poultices made from it can be used on the eyes. As a dye, the plant can be boiled down until it is reduced to a thick, black syrup; this was used as a binder in pigments for painting pottery.The plant is called waa’ in the Navajo language. Its scientific description was based on specimens collected on the Lewis and Clark Expedition. "

source: wikipedia

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