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Ramps for spring cleaning or variety, Parsnips for easy self seeding crop

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  • wMilmoe@aol.com
    Ramps grow well here in the NW, native to the SE US like the Carolinas they are not well known locally.? See info below. Parsnips are a root perennial crop
    Message 1 of 1 , May 24, 2009
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      Ramps grow well here in the NW, native to the SE US like the Carolinas they are not well known locally.  See info below.

      Parsnips are a root perennial crop that break up clay soils well and can be eaten raw or cooked.

      I have an abundance of both and willing to sell or trade.   Ramps (2 bulbs for $1) Parsnips $1, 2 or 3 basically a dollar per foot of height.  $5 if you want one in a pot.

      I also have beautiful chives, forget-me-nots (blue), vine maple trees, empress of china (Paulownia tomentosa) start and a 16 ft Black Locust tree.  The trees are all in pots and ready to go. :>)

      I need native frogs or tadpoles for my ponds.  Parsley starts (no hybrids please) I want them to reseed themselves each year.

      Thank you

      Meadows Tilth Urban Farm
      360 695 4482

      Native medicine
      To early Native American and, later, the white settlers, ramps were an important and welcome addition to the early spring menu. The fresh and tender-green ramp leaves with their strong onion-garlic taste were an improvement on the bland winter fare of dried fruits, pickled vegetables, nuts, beans, and dried beef or salt pork; they were regarded as a spring tonic that cleansed the blood.
      Modern science supports this folk tradition. Alliums are a good source of Vitamin C, a fleeting nutrient that was often lacking in winter diets, as well as prostaglandin A1, a fatty acid known to be therapeutic in the treatment of hypertension. Studies have linked the genus to increases in the production of high-density lipoproteins, which in turn are believed to combat heart disease by reducing blood serum levels of cholesterol. So, by following their instincts and taste buds, these early mountain folk discovered a valuable nutritional supplement.
      Native Americans knew ramps well. They used them in decoctions to treat coughs and colds, and they made a poultice from the juice of the strong summer bulbs to alleviate the pain and itching of bee stings. The Menomini called them pikwute sikakushia (skunk plant), and they referred to an area near the southern shore of Lake Michigan, where ramps grew abundantly, as CicagaWuni or shikako (skunk place). The term was later applied to a white settlement now known as Chicago.
      The late wild foods evangelist Euell Gibbons considered ramps "the sweetest and the best of the wild onions. They have a mild onion flavor with a hint of garlic, which I find delicious." The mildness is relative, however. Though definitely more delicate than the typical wild onion or garlic, ramp greens are decidedly more pronounced and lingering in flavor (though less hot) than ordinary cooking onions.
      Now that modern technology has given us a steady, year-round supply of fresh fruit and vegetables, our dietary need for ramps as a spring tonic has diminished. But to mountain folk, especially those in central West Virginia and western North Carolina where the tradition still lingers, the social medicine conferred by ramps is an integral rite of spring, a spiritual need.
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