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Thread: American Beautyberry

  1. #1

    Default American Beautyberry

    I take photos all the time (296 today) of plants and stuff. I always mean to post some of them and don't.

    The south east has a plant called the American Beautyberry. It is everywhere here in South Florida.

    This one of many photos I took of the plant in several spots in different wooded areas.

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    I had always heard that the plant was toxic. But, further reading says it is not. It can be eaten out of hand or made into a jam.

    Green Dean of eattheweeds.com did a youtube video.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=igKeqZjxPYQ

    Its also said to make a decent wine.

    I am no expert or even a ranked amateur. Does anyone else have experience with this plant? I can find no look alikes.


  2. #2
    Senior Member Winnie's Avatar
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    It is also a good insect repellant too.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Callicarpa_americana
    Recession; A period when you go without something your Grandparents never heard of.

  3. #3

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    Yeah, I saw that as well. I have never tried it though. They say it is as good as DEET. So, I am going to try it next outing.

  4. #4

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    Interesting! I'm not sure if that grows around here.

  5. #5
    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    According to what I have previously found, it does not grow in your area RWC. http://www.wildcrafting.net/forage/plant/161/
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    Senior Member Winnie's Avatar
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    Callicarpa isn't native here,It's grown as a garden shrub.
    Recession; A period when you go without something your Grandparents never heard of.

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    naturalist primitive your_comforting_company's Avatar
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    I was previously told it was toxic too, so I left it at that. I'm familiar enough with it's identity that I can name the sprouts and small plants even without flowers or berries. My grandma said they used it to make a dye for their clothes, but that is the extent of my knowledge. I will definately be doing more research on this one.
    thanks for bringing it to my attention!
    But it does raise the question.. which one do you believe? the one that says it's toxic, or the one that says it isn't?

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    naturalist primitive your_comforting_company's Avatar
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    that video makes me feel like a dummy..
    I just told someone a few weeks ago not to eat them LOL.

  9. #9
    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    Before I had taken his (Green Dean) class, I thought they were toxic as well.
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    Over Taxed Under Paid Swamprat1958's Avatar
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    Here in the south it is called "French Mulberry". It is a pretty good deer browse and birds eat the berries. I have been told it was toxic all my life I may have to try some next year since most of the berries are gone from the plants this late in the year.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Winnie's Avatar
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    Having read a bit more, the berries are astringent. I would personally not eat them raw unless I had to. But I bet they'd make a really unusual jam!
    Recession; A period when you go without something your Grandparents never heard of.

  12. #12

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    Green Deane drinks Sassafras tea and it has been proven to be carcinogenic.

  13. #13
    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    I have read and heard that about Sassafrass. I think back the the many times in the Scouts, drinking Sassafrass tea and iced tea. I guess I need to do a little research and check sources.
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  14. #14

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    Quote Originally Posted by crashdive123 View Post
    Before I had taken his (Green Dean) class, I thought they were toxic as well.
    I am hoping to take a class or two with Green Dean. Where did you take the class with him?

  15. #15
    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    I took one in Jacksonville. He does several in the Orlando or middle part of the state - not sure how far south he does them.
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    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    Here's his class schedule for the rest of the year. http://www.eattheweeds.com/www.EatTh..._SCHEDULE.html
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    Otaku/ survivalist wannab ravenscar's Avatar
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    this grows everywhere out here, its very common and seems to be hard to machete to death. so if you ever finds yourself in east texas its a sure bet you will find some
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  18. #18

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    Quote Originally Posted by crashdive123 View Post
    Here's his class schedule for the rest of the year. http://www.eattheweeds.com/www.EatTh..._SCHEDULE.html
    I am going to sign up for his class Dec 5th in West Palm. Here is a list of thing he says we'll see.

    "American Beautyberry, Malaleuca (tea tree) pines, caesar weed, wild grapes, citrus, conyza, smilax, passion flowers, sandspurs, koontie, ipomoea, oaks, commelinas, Emilias, purslane, amaranth, figs, crowfoot grass, surinam cherry, bitter gourd, red spiderling, sea grapes, sida, cattails, yellow pond lillies, Spanish needles, mangos, sedges, wapato, pickerel weed, sabal palms. royal palms, queen palms, bamboo, traveler palms, coconuts, date palms, dollar weed, water hyssop, mahoe, varigated mahoe, seaside mahoe, fishtail palm, podocarpus, lichen, Ilex, and two of the most toxic seeds on earth and an iguana or two."

  19. #19
    Super Moderator crashdive123's Avatar
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    In the class I took he identified well over 50 edible plants, most of which I had walked by every day without giving a second thought to them. I've still got to match up all of the pictures I took with the notes I kept.
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  20. #20

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    Green Dean was the one that told me that about the Sassafras in one of his vids I believe. Interestingly enough my Grandpaw made it often and all his kids drank it. None died of cancer that I'm aware of and most lived to a ripe old age.

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