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A Survivalist's best friend is a weed?

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posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:04 PM
What if I told you one plant can feed you, stanch bleeding, instantly stop the pain of insect stings, protect you from ticks, heal wounds & sores, cure coughs, colds, earaches, toothaches and diarrhea as well as ease constipation, and you've been walking by it nearly every day!

Broadleaf Plantain (Plantago major)

Meet the Broadleaf Plantain (Plantago major) and Plantago lanceolata, English or Seaside Plantain, plant of the week #4 for the All Things Survival Radio Show.
Common in North America, Europe and Asia it is easy to find and identify. It grows in disturbed grounds and yards and is one of the only plants that can thrive growing in cracks of sidewalks.
The Broadleaf variety can be identified by the shiny green, strongly-ribbed leaves which spread out low to the ground in a rosette. The seed head is long and slender, from 4 to 10" tall. English Plantain has much narrower leaves which are rougher and darker green, also in a rosette while the seed head is conical atop a narrow stem 6-12" tall.

English Plantain (Plantago Lanceolata)

This lowly weed deserves a place at the top of the survivalist's need-to-know list. Because of it's wide distribution, profuse growth and easy identification, Plantain is great source of edible greens and an emergency first aid kit on-the-go. The young, tender leaves are rather bland but edible raw and an excellent source of vitamin A as well as calcium, phosphorous and riboflavin and mixes well with other cooked greens.

Called "Soldier's Herb" in Medieval Europe due to it's coagulant properties, Plantain contains Alantoin and Aucubin which studies have proven to help stanch the flow of blood.
Due to these properties those who take blood thinners or are prone to blood clots should not take this herb internally.

Broadleaf Plantain Flowers

English Plantain Flowers

Also proven is the ability of Plantain to take the sting out of bee, wasp and insect stings. The high mucilage content makes it a good treatment for sores, cuts and earaches and helps to reduce pain and inflammation.
Known as "white man's foot" by Native Americans since plantain grew wherever pioneers settled. They found use by heating and macerating the leaves which would then be applied to cure headaches.

As you can see, this extraordinary plant is one which every survivalist should know.

Food: Young leaves can be eaten raw, older leaves require boiling, seeds can be eaten raw, boiled or dried and ground into flour.

Whole Plant used for:
Stanch wounds

Seeds for:
The seeds are known as Psyllium, the name for the main ingredient in bulk laxatives.

Insecticidal, Repels ticks - Some people say eating the seeds helps keep bugs at bay. I mash the leaves and allow them to steep in rubbing alcohol. I put this in a spray bottle and have never had tick problems while using this applied to my shoes and pant legs.

I hope this was informative, we'll be discussing Plantain Thursday night at 8PM est on the All Things Survival Radio Show. Get skype and listen via

edit on Wed, 20 Apr 2011 22:44:40 -0500 by JacKatMtn because: (no reason given)

edit on 20-4-2011 by Asktheanimals because: for spelling errors

edit on 21-4-2011 by Asktheanimals because: improper formatting

edit on 21-4-2011 by Asktheanimals because: corrections

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:12 PM
Thanks for this awesome info. I forgive you for shutting down my thread now.

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:17 PM
reply to post by Asktheanimals

Hi OP, looks like a great post but I'm not seeing the pix.

The links are showing as text.

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:18 PM
They grow all over my yard and are quite nice to eat. A nice rinse and toss in the salad with some Dandelion greens, you wont even know they are there about like spinach. Wasn't familiar with the medicinal uses I'll have to do some experimenting have enough ticks and wasps to test that no problem

Here's what they look like in my yard:

edit on 4/20/2011 by iforget because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:38 PM
Some images:

Broadleaf Plantain:

Broadleaf Plantain flowers:

English Plantain:

English Plantain flowers:

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:49 PM
Excellent info. Seems that the things all around us are seldom given cred or even identified for all their properties. We just walk them underfoot and never look back.

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:49 PM
Survivalists' 2 best friends... Feasting free on wild edibles by Bradford Angier andTraditional herbal remidies by Michael Houard

Or some such books to put in the bug-out-bag. Anyone else recommend some good North American wild plant books? I have a bit of a collection going..

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:50 PM
reply to post by Asktheanimals

Thanks for the tidbit of useful information.

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 10:55 PM
reply to post by Invariance

Euell Gibbons:

You probably already have this man's books. He was quite a celebrity in the 70's....
I learned a lot from the guy

Here are some of his book titles.
# Stalking the Wild Asparagus (1962)
# Stalking the Blue-Eyed Scallop (1964)
# Stalking the Healthful Herbs (1966)
# Stalking the Good Life (1966)
edit on 20-4-2011 by spacedoubt because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 20 2011 @ 11:10 PM
reply to post by spacedoubt

Thanks for the suggestions, I haven't read them but these days I'm reading just about anything I can get my hands on. Lots of useful info in those kinds of books, even if (hopefully) we never need the info, it may be nice to go get some free food all the same!

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 05:14 AM
Probably my favorite plant/survival book is an awesome work called, get this... How to Stay Alive in the Woods. Make sure you get the water resistant version.(Green and rubber)
edit on 21-4-2011 by Tephra because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 05:29 AM
reply to post by spacedoubt

I never knew there was wild asparagus?
2 years ago while out in the bush I found asparagus and just assumed someone was there before me and planted it.
Thats very cool to know that it might have been wild and I found some.

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 05:47 AM
Be aware of your environment...ahead of time...
start soon
walking and observing gets you into shape too

star and flag
Plantain (psyllium) is a major source of fiber and is used as the base for brand name concoctions
It is very useful
Try eating a leaf with a pinch of red sumac berries..( sumac fruit in mass is a "droop")
very very good addition to a salad ( so are the sumac berries which ate tart and sweet...excelent)

You can use the juice from rolling a few leaves in your hand to relieve bug stings and poison Ivy..
though it doesn't heal the same...
(Jewel weed for that)
PER 100 grams
Water - 81 grams
Protein - 2.5 g
Fat - .03 g
Carbs- 14.6
calcium - 184 milligrams
Phos 52mg
Iron - 1.2 mg
Sodium 16mg
Potassium - 277mg
ascorbic - 8mg
B Caroteen 2520 mg
thiamine - 95mg
riboflavin - 280mg
niacin - 800 mg

Also makes a good under arm deoderant ( you will also absorb the nutrients that way too...)
Plantain will relieve tooth aches ( mix with salt even better (ground qween anne's lace seeds)
Yarrow will CURE toothaches abcesses etc)

as you can see this is a handy little plant.

here are some very good pain relief lists

learn this now
edit on 21-4-2011 by Danbones because: (no reason given)

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 05:53 AM
It's sad that in most suburbs, many of these plants have been killed off. Most want lush, Bermuda lawns. I think these plants are here for a reason. Not only the dandelion but also blackberries are not as plentiful as use to be. I also remember a plant called Polk (I think that's the correct spelling) that my grandmother use to cook, like greens.

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 05:57 AM
Start a weed garden
trust me
10 feet by ten feet
short of direct herbicide how can it fail?
its weeds

even if you hide it in a green space
who's gonna know.?

the seed stalks dried make great tasting chews and that is fiber baby.

nice PIX ATA
can't emphasize the subjects importance enough
edit on 21-4-2011 by Danbones because: PS, links

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 06:15 AM
I always had the nagging feeling that when I pulled weeds from my backyard I was holding something important. I dunno it was such a weird feeling. But anyway. I always knew that you could eat dandelions, heck I thought Chrysanthemums were dandelions! Nice post.

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 07:07 AM
reply to post by Asktheanimals

So Awesome...I used to have these buggers in my yard all the time, and it drove me nuts. Who'd have thought they would be such a miracle plant.

Thanks again, and S&F

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 07:28 AM
reply to post by Asktheanimals

Dear Lord..... I've been trying to kill this stuff in my yard for years!! LOL. Woops. Guess instead of trying to irradicate it I'll be inviting it. Will be digging it up and putting it in the medicinal herb section of the garden along with Heal-All and Jerusalem Artichoke. Nice thing about these plants is that they are natives in my area and will take very little to keep healthy. Thanks for the information, ATA, much appreciated. Great stuff from you as per usual!

Cheers ~MMIMO

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 07:33 AM
post removed for serious violation of ATS Terms & Conditions

posted on Apr, 21 2011 @ 07:49 AM
It's true.. every plant you eat (leave out genetic hybrids of course) was at one time just a 'weed'. There are plenty of wild fruit, berries and veggies that are edible. The problem is that the world has gotten used to grocery stores and we forgot how to "make do" as Granny used to say. I also wanted to share that reading about the 'lost arts' may be helpful at some point. Anyone know how to weave a net to catch fish? How do you make soap? This is information that may not save your life per say, but if people have to go to you for something like soap because no one knows how to make it from raw ingredients, then you can barter for food or other supplies...

Sorry Mod, I know this post is kind of off topic, but I think it's a useful contribution. Trying to get people to think of things they may not have considered.

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