Devil’s Club

Devil's Club "Alaskan Ginseng"

I was watching an old episode of Man Vs. Wild on Netflix where Bear Grylls briefly mentions that the plant “Devils Club” is used by Alaskan Natives for numerous uses .  It is in the Oriental Ginseng family.

I became curious and did a little digging on Google to look at various sites until one caught my eye,

The writer of the article known as username, “The Last Frontier”, writes,

“The parts of the plant that are used are the new buds and the root bark. The buds are mostly used in the kitchen, while the root bark has the medicinal properties. We began collecting Devil’s Club buds a few weeks ago, and last week we dug some roots of the plants that we needed to clear from our yard. Within a quarter mile of our cabin are acres and acres of of Alaska Ginseng. The bark peels easily from the root.

Because Devil’s Club belongs to the Oriental Ginseng family, its uses are similar, and lab tests have shown no toxicity. However, as with any plant you have not tried before, proceed with caution. Eat only a very small amount (just a taste) at first, wait a day or so, and then work up slowly.”

The author goes on to write,

“I’m soaking some of the Devil’s Club root bark in olive oil now and will make a salve to keep on hand (as well homemade soap with the infused oil, and dried root bark for tea and tincture). I think it would be wonderful mixed with Comfrey root, which I grow in my herb garden. Comfrey’s nickname is “Boneknit” because of its amazing ability to heal broken bones. I have used it in my family several times and am a strong believer! It is equally impressive in healing soft tissue. With little boys, I use it all the time for bumps, bruises and scrapes. But, Comfrey is not particularly helpful for pain. That’s why I think Devil’s Club and Comfrey mixed together would make an excellent salve to keep on the shelf for when one of my boys comes in with a scraped knee or a bump on the head after crashing his sled into a tree (that happens more often that I care to think about).”

I’ve never personally seen or tasted the plant myself but am going to look to try to get acquainted with it to test its potentcy.

You can read the rest of the article by clicking HERE

Devil’s Club or Echinopanax Horridum

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