Rare/Near extinction

teljkonDecember 25, 2007

Im finally up and runing on the forums my first question as a novice is what would you guys plant in the way of rare or faltering herbs in my zone. For example what is the the golden seal of florida? I want to do this to give back to mother nature whom I hope will bless my future plantings after this act of tribute. My yard is primarly sandy south florida dirt with some fertial and moist areas that other plants may take to.

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Have you considered why certain plants may be 'rare' or faltering? Maybe it's because conditions need to be ideal for them to grow, so I'd research any one carefully - but it's a good idea!

    Bookmark   December 25, 2007 at 5:11AM
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I'm from a little further north, so I am not real familiar with your area. But here are some thoughts.

The native orchids of Florida could use some help. Some of these were used medicinally by the Native Americans, although there is not a large market the way there is for goldenseal.

I think the Gumbo-Limbo tree has some potential. It is well known in Caribbean herbalism, not so well known in modern US herbalism.

Other things to consider include saw palmetto, passionflora. Cerassie is one of the most common herbs used through the Caribbean, not sure if it is a native to Florida.

If a plant is on the threatened/endangered species list, you can't 'interfere' with it in any way without a permit. This includes gathering the seed, leaves, stems, or roots. Even if you are trying to rescue and foster the plant, you need a permit to go beyond passive preservation of habitat.

If you want to give back to mother nature, add something for bees, butterflies or hummingbirds. I have a row of tea plants (Camellia sinensis, used to produce green tea/black tea). At this time of year, there is not much for the bees, but those Camellias are blooming profusely and are covered with busy bees.

Here is a link that might be useful: NPR story - Restoring Orchids in Florida

    Bookmark   December 25, 2007 at 10:12AM
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It's a great idea to plant local natives, to enjoy them and provide habitat for other species.

I'd start by contacting groups like the Florida Native Plant Society, and looking into other resources through a Google search or via your local library.

In other areas, plants like goldenseal and ginseng have become rare or endangered in the wild because of irresponsible overcollecting, so it's important for herbal enthusiasts to help protecting remaining populations and make sure that the products we buy come from companies that avoid wild harvesting.

    Bookmark   December 25, 2007 at 5:53PM
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Thanks for all the sugestions ill check out those links. Im obviously not going to go and poach anything. We have alot of great nurseries down hear and my family has a few links into that crowd so im sure with a little leg work ill be able to find a "home grown source" of just about anything. The whole idea is the grow propagate and then sell these fellers back inot the plant world so they dont have to be poached. Tree wise im kinda there already i have 2 large pine trees so I dont have space for anything eles. Palmetto had crossed my mind never heard of Cerassie, and im going to make a visit to the orchid society once I get my confidence up a little on my green thumb. Funny you should talk about passion flora im planing on puting up some fruiting verieties asap.

    Bookmark   December 26, 2007 at 3:30AM
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