Ozark Encyclopedia – M – Mayapple

Mayapple, American Mandrake - Podophyllum peltatum Parts used: root, fruit Traditional uses: Poisonous. Root soaked in whiskey and taken for rheumatism and as a purgative. Boiled root eaten as a purgative. Powdered root used on ulcers and sores. Fruit used for food. “Podophyllum is a medicine of most extensive service; its greatest power lies in... Continue Reading →

Ozark Encyclopedia – J – Jimsonweed

Jimsonweed - Datura stramonium ***CAUTION! Poisonous!*** Parts used: flower, leaf Traditional uses: Poisonous. Poultice of wilted leaves used on boils and fresh wounds. Smoked for asthma. Poultice of decoction of leaves mash applied to the chest for pneumonia. Compound poultice with crushed seeds rubbed on sore throat. “Antispasmodic, anodyne and narcotic. Its properties are virtually... Continue Reading →

Ozark Encyclopedia – C – Catnip

Catnip - Nepeta cataria Parts used: leaf, flower Traditional uses: Infusion used for female obstructions. Infusion used for worms. Infusion used for spasms. Syrup with honey used for colds and infusion used for babies' colds. Syrup with honey used for coughs. Infusion taken for hives and poultice of leaf used for boils and swellings. Infusion... Continue Reading →

Ozark Encyclopedia – C – Camphor

Poultice to cure a cold – “…the only way to cure such a cold was to apply a poultice of lard, camphor, turpentine, and fried onions.” ~Randolph OMF 94 Worn to protect from meningitis – “Small boys are sometimes forced to wear little bags of camphor sewed to their shirts, to prevent their catching meningitis... Continue Reading →

Ozark Encyclopedia – B – Black Pepper

Black Pepper - Piper nigrum Parts used: seed Traditional uses: Used as an astringent, stimulant, and to season food.  “Aromatic, stimulant, carminative; is said to possess febrifuge properties. Its action as a stimulant is specially evident on the mucous membrane of the rectum, and so is good for constipation, also on the urinary organs; externally... Continue Reading →

Ozark Encyclopedia – A – Alum

Alum, or alum rock, is a naturally occurring chemical compound that’s been used for centuries in various applications. In the Ozarks alum was typically used in taxidermy and dying clothes (as the alum acts as a mordant for the dye). In medicine alum has been historically used as a strong astringent specifically in the treatment... Continue Reading →

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