October 07, 2007

Plants for a Future I was poking around wikipedia reading up on native Inca cuisine when I stumbled across this site. It's a searchable database of underutilized edible, medicinal, and otherwise useful plant species.
  • This is really cool and comprehensive. Thanks, squidranch!
  • I found it interesting that quite a few of the spices used almost exclusively in Indian cooking also show up on the list of narcotic pain killers. Maybe I order the Vindaloo for reasons heretofore unknown.
  • Interesting site. Doesn't look like many of these will be all that easy to get if we'd like to try them.
  • Ooh, I can take wolfsbane for my arthritis! Funnily enough, one of the best restaurants in my hometown seems to be named for a tree whose bark can be used to induce vomiting. My old boss used to tell me about using large quantities of nutmeg as an hallucinogen as a teenager.
  • Huh. Link above doesn't work. Try this. http://www.pfaf.org/database/plants.php?Aesculus+hippocastanum
  • Very interesting place. I recall my grandma and mother's knowledge of plants and herbs, the traditional remedies for minor (and sometimes major) maladies based on teas and infusions. This was a common, shared wealth of information that sadly has been all but lost in the jump to the next generation. And the crackdown from established health care against it based on (sometimes legitimate) concerns about public health due the inevitable charlatans and mis-directed self-applications.