Tuesday, August 11, 2009
Medicinals and Alternative food sources
Did you know that cattail is edible? Yep, they sure are! The peeled, young shoots of cattails less than 18" long can be eaten raw or cooked as a potato substitute. Just before blooming when enclosed in a husk, the top spike steamed or boiled, can be eaten like corn on the cob. Pollen sections next to the base of the leaves and the rhizomes can be ground into flour for making bread.
The cattail is a perennial found growing in rich, wet soils, marshes, swamps, wet ditches and stream/pond edges throughout the heartland.
Native Americans used the cattail as a medicine, the fluff was a treatment for skin irritations(used like baby powder) used chopped root on burns, in an infusion to treat intestinal parasites and diarrhea.
A common plant to keep in mind.