Salvaging Yerba Mansa

I took pictures of these, and didn’t know what they were, so this post was helpful.

Deborah Small's Ethnobotany Blog

On Thursday, June 24, we took a fieldtrip to one of the regional parks in Riverside. Rose Ramirez, Joe Moreno, and I helped Tongva elder Barbara Drake gather yerba mansa and elderberries. We potted the salvaged yerba mansa plants, and will distribute them to Native American elders and others as part of the Preserving Our Heritage Native Foods Project. Lori Sisquoc and Barbara created the project about a year ago. If people have gardens, we’re encouraging them to grow more of the highly medicinal and beautiful yerba mansa plants. With sufficient water, yerba mansa will multiply.

Barbara dug out the first yerba mansa with a digging stick to honor the traditional Native American manner of respectfully gathering the plant. After that, we used shovels and trowels. We transferred the yerba mansa to plastic pots, and Barbara put a little pinch of tobacco in each of the pots. She described it…

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