Hedgerow sourced basket making

alice's picture

Thought folks here might like Sally Pointer's videos, just discovered her Youtube channel, here she is harvesting burdock plants for fibre use, and she uses the burdock and some bramble fibre to make a basket which she finishes in the subsequent video.

I think she is coming at it mainly from a kind of academic reconstruction and craft interest perspective, I love what she is making, and I want to try this. I have thought in the past that the structural uses for foraged plants are what we have most lost here. Many of the wild food plants are still known about especially by people who live close to the ground, but the fibre uses of many wild plants are almost lost because modern industrial cordage etc is so convenient. But how inspiring, this seems like taking it to the next level and being able to wildcraft containers and cordage out of the hedgerows too as well as foraging for bits of food, beverages, and so on. Proper trailing edge technology as JMG might say.

I think probably not all of you will live in place where there are hedgerows. Here in England the hedgerows are real havens not only for wildlife but as I have been learning to pay attention they also tell a story of landless people's usage over history. For instance I noticed that many of the traditional traveller's stopping places are marked with horseradish plants. Then I learned that it's not just the root (which is dug and grated for horseradish sauce), the leaves were used as containers to wrap and flavour food. So anyway here in England hedgerows have been one of ordinary country people's important resources.

Edited to fix links

David Trammel's picture

That's interesting about the horseradish. In a After Oil story I've been working on, the wayfarer people of the Future America are planting Jerusalem Artichokes, at their stopping places, for the tubers for food as well as for making liquor. JAs are used to make a sort of white alcohol liquor popular in Europe. Eating too many, or preparing the tubers incorrectly can lead to bad flatulence and stomach cramps from gas, which of course leads to some unexpected complications when some locals notice the planting, lol.

I wouldn't be surprised if loosely organized tribes of climate refugees don't do the same. Identify places that offer better resting spots, then seed them with eatable plants for those who come afterwards.