Friday, July 16, 2010

The Standing People

Usually by this time of year the R.M. or a local farmer has hayed the ditches (farmspeak for "cut down whatever's growing there and made it into bales for cattle). This year it's far too wet. There are cattails growing, for heaven's sake. But also, there are wildflowers I haven't seen close by here before.

Normally there are brown-eyed susans, prairie lilies, yarrow, bergamot, anemone, camas, harebells and so on and so forth. But this year I found wild licorice and wild mint out there too. The root of the licorice is supposed to relieve symptoms of menopause. The mint I won't bother with because I've got some in my garden, trying to choke out one of the lily patches. Mint is easily identified by its square stem. It's time to start making tea out of it, and put a dint in its vigour.

**The Standing People is a book by Kahlee Keane, a folk healer who lives in Saskatoon, and her partner Dave. The book identifies medicinal wild plants found in western Canada. I keep it tucked in my purse so it's with me when I see some strange "weed."