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What is this?

Posted by smferguson Z6 Nashville (fergydad@comcast.net) on
Fri, Sep 21, 12 at 14:56

Is it a weed? Are these berries good to eat or poison?


Follow-Up Postings:

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RE: What is this?

a very hard to remove weed. they call it poke salad I believe, and once is big the root is hard to pull up thus requiring some digging and all those berries are seeds.
Roundup does a nice job at killing it.


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RE: What is this?

It's Phytolacca americana, commonly called pokeweed. "Poke salad" is a mispronounced twist on another of it's common names, poke sallet. All parts of the plant are highly poisonous, but the leaves can be repeatedly blanched (to remove the toxins) and eaten as greens. Berries and shoots can also be specially cooked, to remove toxins, before being processed and eaten.


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RE: What is this?

The juice of the berries was used in colonial times for ink. It starts out purple, turns brown in time.


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RE: What is this?

Thank you for posting this!

I have a giant one in my yard; it's very pretty! No offshoots so far. I plan to keep it so the birds will have something to munch on.


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RE: What is this?

Ah... poke. My grandmother told me that she used to cook the leaves like brandon7 described. I've never tried it.


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RE: What is this?

My father remembered picking "poke sallet". Apparently the smell of it cooking is not appetizing.


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