Thursday, March 10, 2011

Ever Eat a Pine Tree? Research and Book Gems

I always loved nature… all the different plants, the trees, the different butterflies, fish in our pond, horses and other animals, the stars, rocks, and even some plants I was taught to gather as a young girl, like our springtime morel mushrooms:) I was intrigued while still young with a gentleman named Euell Gibbons. He was famous from the television for doing commercial for a cereal company, where he asked us, “have you ever at a pine tree?” Well, he peaked my interest for sure. As a wild child running around our woods and pond with my brothers, anything we could eat sure interested me! We did our best to stay out of sight and away from the house when the weather was pretty;-) So… fast forward to the last decade. I am starting to find books that I want to explore more and some of the first ones are Euell Gibbon’s books

Seems Euell was born during a time when times were tough for many families living in America’s Dustbowl. Euell started going out in the woods and hills and foraging for food for his families table at a young age. He carried this interest in how to obtain free food from the wild throughout his life, and his books are true treasures. He was an outstanding woodsman and naturalist with a keen curiosity to thoroughly delve into learning and his writings reflect his passion. The books are just chock full of different herbal tidbits too, so those of you who might not be able to or just don’t care to wild craft, would still find these books not only entertaining and well written, but useful also:)

In his book Stalking the Healthful Herb, he has a chapter entitled “Ever eat a Pine Tree? (Pinus strobus)”.


A wonderful aspect of Euell’s books is the fact he really researched how peoples before him had utilized the plants and trees, etc for not only medicinal reasons, but as foods also. There really isn’t much of a line between the two in my mind anyway, so his writings are amongst some of my favorites, and the first I turn to when learning.

On this site, Vermont Weathervane, I found where a writer obtained permission from the publisher of the above book, to reprint the above mention article. I invite you to explore all the healthy and useful ways to utilize pine as food and medicine, from Euell’s findings. I get a chuckle that even though he was not fond of the taste of pine, he still was thorough in his historical uses of other peoples uses of it, and then explored different ways to make it more palatable. I will just have to try the Candied White Pine recipe, although, I suspect I might like it better as a cough drop sort of thing also:)

This post is especially for my Herbal Ally Challenge participation, The Tree year project, and as a terribly late response to the Herbarium February blog party, Herbal Gems.  Last month was a difficult month and I am sorely behind!

I have to recommend Euell Gibbon’s other books also. Stalking the Wild Asparagus and Stalking the Faraway Places are two I also own and refer to often. I could just sit down and read his books for the fun of it as his writing style and observations with a naturalists eye, never ceases to draw me right into the adventure with him:)

Hugs to all who visit Comfrey Cottages xx



April said...

his books have been on my wishlist for awhile! and candied white pine sounds yum. thanks for the link going to check it out!

Lemon Verbena Lady said...

Is this a trick question? OK, no you're reading Mr. Gibbons! Thanks for sharing his wisdom, CC!xxoo Nancy

Mo said...

What an interesting post! I've never heard of him and now I'm interested in finding out more, thanks!
I've heard of Pine Needle Tea, and I seem to remember an alcoholic beverage too, but I need to check that.

Comfrey Cottages said...

Enjoy the link April xx I highly recommend his book for enjoyment and learning! Many times you can even find them cheapish in the used book section or yard sales even:)
lol Nancy! xx
Oh Mo! I think you would just love his books! Thanks for visiting everyone xx