Monday, December 6, 2010


THE more I read, collect propagate and plant, the further away I move from my peers.  I do not know if that is contamination, too much time in college, a victim of two cultures Spain and USA,  or plain childish curiosity.

Check the information below and follow your own path later. There is a lot left to do.

Titania is the one to blame.  This wise peer from down under, wrote a comment recently that left me thinking about weeds and nature in general.  Some become salt and water after five minutes, others remain as stimulant.

There are no blogs on ethnobotany, I have never seen one.  The same goes for black/negro bloggers. There is one in Barbados, a fashionista with blue royalty British blood. Buahaja bilingual laugh.

The scientific study of the relationship between people and plants is ethnobotany.

Ethnobotanists aim to describe and explain complex relationships between
cultures and (uses of) plants: focusing primarily on how plants are used, managed and perceived across human societies (e.g.) as foods; as medicines;
in divination; in cosmetics; in dyeing;
as textiles; in construction; as tools; as clothing, as currency; in literature; in rituals; and social life. * 

If you remember, I suffer from precocious amnesia,  the previous post was on weeds. Some of them. I bring you now others. Weeds or grasses, or gramineas have determined our life in the first and third worlds, directly or indirectly as in  goats, sheep, cows. 

Aegilops/Triticum, Hordeum vulgare, Secale cereale or wheat, barley and rye,
have been the pillars of our cultures and  diets in almost every continent.   But also the basis for raw spirits.

One thing that disturbs me in terms of comprehension is that anthropologists, do not pass judgment in terms of the cultures under study regarding the urge to use substances to get stone, trip, allucinate. However, most are illegal in our societies. These are liquid, solid, smoked, chewed or drank.

It is natural that our first world moved from the natural to the chemical since its view and perception of  nature is one of profits/alienation.  Therefore meta-amphetamines, for recreational usage and every other over priced remedy developed by pharmaceuticals, for any illness requiring medication.
One cures the disease, creating five/ten reactions of discomfort, requiring in turn other medications in a vicious circle...

That is that for now. Just scratching the surface.
* Wikipedia.

Apaga i fuites....



  1. Procuro en lo que cabe, no tomar medicamentos, me da la impresión de que se confabulan los grandes empresarios de la medicina, para amolarnos mas de lo que ya estamos.

    Hasta pronto, gracias por tu entrada, un abrazote.

  2. It is a pity that local blogs only bicker about politics or the latest vulgarity trend. The folklore behind medicinal plants is vast in Puerto Rico, yet only a few publications exist on the subject, and are extremely academic.
    In my youth you always found tartago, tuna, ruda and many other plants at any household. I know there is an oral tradition, passed by many generations, on these remedies. It would be very nice to see a blog written locally on the subject. Most blogs on medicinal plants are written outside Puerto Rico.
    I guess that it is easier to buy the latest medicine at CVS or Walgreens than to find alternates using local medicinal plants.

  3. I actually am working on an ethnobotany post for the next couple of weeks...the problem is that I have my field notes but haven't written them out in any coherent fact, several are sitting in the "edit room" waiting for me to publish:) I am a do it differently kind of person and don't like that people tend to stick together on things because they are afraid of the other path ahead of them.....I say, who cares! Just do's the unique perspectives that keep it fresh and alive in any topic. Example. A cruise trip or a trip you plan away from the touristy areas.....I choose the's much more rewarding:)

  4. Thanks to all for the feedback.

    Beato: botanica en la net was a still born futile attempt from
    Maga Garcia and some ghost Papo Vives on the subject. What you have stated is the truth. I would add that those not in the academician register are too hollistic, for moi.

    Medicinal plants was part of our collective
    memory, now gone.

    I bet in any other parts of the world following the USA economic model the same goes on. Alienation on the other hand, explains why most people not planting anything do remember what their mothers used to have in the yard, to cure this or that.

    Chomp: lo que indica es muy cierto. Por algo cada medicamento tiene al menos cinco contraindicaciones.

    rohrerbot: Do not waste
    time. I am not into that bag. I think the reader can organize the material or not. Your duty is to present concepts, ideas that others should/can/may grab and develop on their own.


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