THE USE OF COTTONWOOD BY THE FIRST PEOPLES OF CASCADIA. (Gunther 1945). Here?s an interesting bit of information. Projects Throughout the Bioregion. Many parts of the cottonwood tree are medicinal. Pneumonia, bronchitis, and asthma are some examples but it may be used to help in any pulmonary condition where the phlegm is stubborn, impedes breathing, and cough is unproductive. *All photographs on this site were taken by Dana, Edmund or Sky Bressette unless otherwise noted. This will help the resin to more easily release into the oil. Global Acts of Compassion is Nourishing ... http://www.motherearthliving.com/health-and-wellness/inside-plants-8.aspx. I place my oiled buds near my heater and keep it warm without a stove top. The inner bark was used to reinforce other fibers in spinning. It is in his book “Medicinal Plants of the Pacific West“. Black cottonwood trees are important for stream habitats. I looked up into the sky and watched the fluffy seeds twirl and dance above me. Several Cascadian tribes believed the Black Cottonwood had a spirit force that was very powerful and it was reported that the tree moved even when the wind was not blowing. “Perhaps you have noticed that even in the slightest breeze you can hear the voice of the cottonwood tree; this we understand is its prayer to the Great Spirit, for not only men, but all things and all beings pray to Him continually in different ways.”. Allow to cool and solidify before covering with lids. Using Trees as Medicine. Alaska Department of Fish and Game. Use by People: Natives used Black Cottonwood for many medicinal purposes. Wetland designation: FAC, Facultative, it is equally likely to occur in wetlands or non-wetlands. Pour a couple of cups of buds and oil into the muslin, bundle it up, twist the cloth and squeeze with all your might. Bees collect the resin, which is an anti-infectant, for their hives and seal intruders (such as mice and other invaders) in the resin to prevent decay and protect the hive (Pojar and Mackinnon p. 46). It was a substance collected from several varieties of Middle Eastern and East African trees and was said to have many curative powers. So, if you are allergic to aspirin, you will probably react to Balm of Gilead tincture as well. Bruised leaves were also placed on cuts as an antiseptic. Cottonwood trees feature male and female parts on separate trees (female trees are the ones that produce the cottony substance that gives the tree its name). Posts Tagged With: medicinal uses of tulip poplar. Use a sharp pair of pruners or scissors and cut twigs that are less than a half inch in diameter. Many medicinal uses. The Iroquois used cottonwood to kill worms in adults, arthritis, skin eruptions and scabs and a decoction of bark taken as a laxative. The infused oil can be added to beeswax to make a balm or salve. It is used especially in treating rheumatism and fevers, and also to relieve the pain of menstrual cramps. The oil will turn a deep golden color and become very fragrant. Young shoots were used to make sweat lodges. Remove twigs. This will also cause the other plant to root. Nourishing Neighbors is a "pay-it-forward" program that lets patrons of local businesses donate towards the next meal for a community member in need. You will notice that some of the buds have catkins inside. Over very low heat, or in the top of a double boiler, stir and melt the beeswax. (Butterflies, moths and skippers). MAKING COTTONWOOD BUD OIL-YOUR OWN BALM OF GILEAD. To each cup of oil, add 1 ½ to 2 Tbsp. Chemical analyses indicate that the bees’ propolis is almost chemically identical to these tree resins and is similar to medicinal gums such as boswellia and myrrh. Uses: Reforestation, ripairan area restoration, windbreaks, cover for birds, habitat; it is often used to control flooding. Take cuttings from a Black Cottonwood tree. Tilford, Gregory L., Edible and Medicinal Plants of the West, ISBN 0-87842-359-1. It is one of the largest of some 40 species of Populus and is the tallest, fastest-growing hardwood in the western United States. Use by wildlife: Streamside Black Cottonwoods create favorable fish habitat by providing stream bank stability, increasing nutrient availability by the shedding of leaves and twigs, and creating a shaded microclimate. trichocarpa (Torr. They used the gum of the burls on cuts and wounds. The bees use the resin as a type of bee glue. They would not burn the wood but would often listen to the trees for direction. Traditional uses and benefits of Cottonwood Inner bark was consumed by numerous native North American Indian tribes in order to prevent scurvy. Seeds may be dispersed by wind or water. It, however, is very good wildlife habitat and is very valuable for quick restoration along floodplains and other moist areas. Research shows that the Cottonwood tree seeds are not the bringer of sneezes and sniffles, but the healer of such maladies. Many kinds of animals use the twigs of Populus balsamifera for food. Economic uses of the black cottonwood include course lumber and the manufacture of wood products such as paper. The wood is also used for fuel. Black Cottonwood is also a favorite nesting or perching tree for many bird species (Bald Eagle, owls, ospreys, hawks, hummingbirds, woodpeckers, etc.). If there is any water or solid material it will fall to the bottom of your container. Both Cottonwood Trees and Willow Trees produce their own rooting hormone, called auxin. An infusion of the bark was used for sore throats. Today Black Cottonwood is used for the interior layers of plywood and for paper products, especially high-grade … Like fine perfume or essential oil.… Simply place the cottonwood buds in a crock pot, add olive oil to just cover the plant material, turn on low, and with the lid off, let the heat do its work for about 5 days. The resin is the sap from the tree. It is made into a tea and used as a wash for sprains, inflammation, muscle pains etc. Because of its salicin content, it was used raw or in salves to treat various ailments. An easy way to use the cottonwood as a rooting helper is to put cuttings of the plants you want to root in a bucket or vase with newly cut cottonwood cuttings. It becomes very large very fast and is also very messy. The wood and buds were burned down to charcoal and used as ceremonial incense. It can grow to 150’ (50m) or more and can live 200-300 years. It has a very fragrant aroma. Broadhurst, C. Leigh, Ph.D and Duke, James A. Ph.D, (1998) Propolis: An Age-Old Medicine, Mother Earth Living, Natural Home, Healthy Life March/April – Viewed on the web 12-01-2012 at. Many instruments of ceremony were made of cottonwood. You can smell the fragrance in the air on the first warm days. WTU Herbarium Image Collection, Plants of Washington, Burke Museum, E-Flora BC, Electronic Atlas of the Flora of British Columbia, USDA Forest Service-Fire Effects Information System, Virginia Tech ID Fact Sheet + Landowner Fact Sheet, Native Plants Network, Propagation Protocol Database, Native American Ethnobotany, University of Michigan, Dearborn. Leaf and bark teas are used to treat tonsillitis, fever, as a douche, and for hemorrhoids. Cottonwood trees can add 6 feet in height each year making them the fastest growing trees in North America. Twigs and buds are food for deer, moose, and elk. The balsam is not water soluble, so it is necessary to extract it either with fat, by macerating it in oil or cocoa butter in a warm place (do not boil, otherwise the buds might get burnt), or to prepare an alcoholic extract (tincture). Did you know that we support grassroots projects in Washington, Oregon, Idaho, and Montana? The leaf buds are covered with a resinous sap that has a strong turpentine odour and a bitter taste. Wind-driven, the seeds cannot survive in the shade of their parent and so they seek their fortunes floating and spilling over into every biome of Cascadia. Cottonwood is a well-known, common tree along rivers and streams throughout the West.Cultivation of hybrid poplars (Populus trichocarpa x. P. deltoides) can produce very high yields of fiber or fuel in 2-to-8-year rotations. Catkins appear before the leaves in the spring. beeswax. & A.Gray ex Hook) Brayshaw, (POP-yu-lus ball-sum-IF-er-uh subspecies tri-ko-KAR-pa). Many parts of the cottonwood tree are medicinal. Distribution of Black Cottonwood from USGS ( “Atlas of United States Trees” by Elbert L. Little, Jr. ). nonprofit family member, presents an art & music series, filmed & recorded in unique locations throughout the Pacific Northwest. Buds are sticky with resin and are fragrant. Names: Black Cottonwood is also known as Balsam Poplar. Propagation is similar to that of willows. There are many different firewood species to choose from. This is probably due to the salicylic acid that is extracted in alcohol, but not in fat. Native Alaskan and exotic plants used by wildlife. It's potent, sweet, and heady. The fruits are round, green, hair capsules that split when ripe into 3 parts. If you have a small amount you can simply pinch the buds with your fingernail. Black Cottonwood is the largest hardwood tree in western North America. The gum from the buds was used to treat baldness, sore throats, whooping cough and tuberculosis. Turn on and blend just until the buds are mostly broken open. The bark is therefore anodyne, anti-inflammatory and febrifuge. Let the pressed oil rest for an hour or so. Pour your oil (minus any water or solids that might be at the bottom) into a glass storage container. This would be used externally or internally for pain relief, inflammation or fever. I want to tell them that this tree is in fact a bearer of great healing. It also makes an excellent massage oil for sore muscles. Also like willows, leaf buds contain salicin which is a powerful anti-inflamatory and pain-reducer. According to Pojar and McKinnon the Nuxalk/Kwakwaka’wakw and other Cascadian First People used the sweet inner bark and cambium tissues as food and medicine. Strip away all the leaves and throw the leaves away. It was commonly used by many native North American Indian tribes who valued it especially for its antiseptic and expectorant properties, using it to treat lung complaints, wounds, skin conditions etc. The cottonwood oil is now ready for use. The tall tree with its furrowed bark and a yellowish hue is a member of the willow family (Salicaceae), and like other poplars, contains resins and cambium with medicinal, food and material uses. Bruised leaves were also placed on cuts as an antiseptic. The resin was extracted and revered as a great healing salve. Medicinal Uses of Cottonwood Answered by: Susan Eagles and Conrad Richter Question from: Sylevestion McGibbon Posted on: March 13, 2007 I am requesting information on the plant cottonwood leaves and its medicinal value, and seed for propagating. Relationships: There are about 15 species of Populus (Poplars, Cottonwoods and Aspens) native to North America. Common Uses: Boxes/crates, veneer, plywood, and various utility purposes. Within 24 hours of hitting its mark, the seed will sprout. What you’ve read in books and watched on YouTube may not apply to your locale. Gunther, Erna. Pour the boiling water onto the cuttings and leave overnight. Habitat: It usually grows on wet to moist sites in floodplains and along rivers. How do you work with medicinal wood? Save in an airtight container in the fridge until you are going to use. Balsamifera means balsam (aromatic resin)-bearing. Huff worthy. Using trees as medicine breaks allows for some rather interesting preparations, as just about any part of the tree can be medicinal. The numerous fluffy seeds of Black Cottonwood resemble snowfall in summer. Join us, other awesome Cascadians, and climate activists around the world in signing the petition asking the Nobel Foundation Board to create a new Nobel Prize for the Fight Against Climate Change NOW! Other uses include kite sticks, strawberry boxes, and paper. The ‘balm of gilead’ of the Bible is a resin-exuding tree related to myrrh (Commiphora myrrha), frankincense (Boswellia spp.) The fruits are hairy, rounded, 3-part capsules that split to release numerous cottony seeds that float through the air. As a child growing up in Oregon, I loved to walk in the cottonwood snow drifts. Medicinal use of Cottonwood: The inner bark was consumed by various native North American Indian tribes in order to prevent scurvy. Many other tribal people collected the buds in the early spring and boiled in deer fat to make a fragrant salve. Boil as much water as will cover your cuttings. Black Cottonwood contains a large amount of rooting hormone, just like willows, so it is useful for plant propagation. Nonprofit family member, presents an art & music series, filmed & recorded in locations. Bud of a double boiler and cover completely with olive oil various ailments gum that exudes from the buds... 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