|Hard stem bulrush, Scirpus
acutus Muhl. ex Bigelow, Family: Cyperaceae.
Native Americans ate inner part of stem raw including the base and tender new shoots (in spring) as harvested from the water. Peel the stem as you would cattails to get to white, tender inner core.
Roots were also boiled, pounded and blended with maple syrup. Dried roots are pulverized into flour.
Seeds are edible and may be dried, cooked with oatmeal and other cereals. Cook until tender.
Survival: Roots may be chewed to relieve thirst.
|Mature stems made into mats,
baskets, basket handles and basket lids. Simply flatten the stem
between fingers and follow your favorite weaving pattern.
Medicine: Pithy inner part of stem used poultice or compress to stop bleeding. As with cattails burned stalk carbon hemostatic, styptic. according to Moerman (Native American Ethnobotany, Timber Press) ashes of burned stem used to stop bleeding from an infant's navel. From the research paper on Rahman Navajo Ethnobotany (US Government Printing Office, 1932) it is said these people used this plant in combination with others as a ceremonial emetic.