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Old 09-13-2011, 10:05 AM
 
Location: Portland, OR
1,082 posts, read 1,280,349 times
Reputation: 1214

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Quote:
Originally Posted by Nell Plotts View Post
You really need brush killer to discourage poison oak, and never - never burn the branches because the oil will get on your clothes. The only soap that does a number on it is Fels Naptha bar soap. I keep two bars of it in my first-aid kit.
Thanks. My approach has been to pour several pots of boiling water on the plant. That's kept it away for up to two years at a time, but apparently I never quite kill the roots.

A couple years ago, I was helping gather willow branches to build a Native American sweat lodge, and I got into some poison oak. I never want to experience that again -- the itching was terrible, and it lasted for over a month.
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Old 09-13-2011, 10:16 AM
 
Location: the Beaver State
6,477 posts, read 6,220,275 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mkl654321 View Post
That rule would exclude blueberries and huckleberries, which are perfectly safe to eat, and really, really delicious, too.
It does. But this is the rule we teach in wilderness survival. Getting lost and then dying due to eating the wrong berry is a huge no-no. So you have to keep the rules simple for people to remember in a panic situation.

Although you very rarely see wild blueberries and in the wild they're easy to mistake for other non-edible berries.

If you're out and about, I highly suggest: Wild Berries of the West as a great general purpose berry guide.

But the ultimate book for our area is those by Nancy J. Turner She focuses mostly on B.C. but there are very few edible plants in her books that don't grow here in Oregon or Washington. I highly suggest anyone grab these books while they're cheap. When they go out of print they hit $100+

Food Plants of Interior First Peoples and Food Plants of Coastal First Peoples are the basis for pretty much every modern wilderness survival guide. I have multiple copies of the first and store them in my car, my RV, and my backpack.
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Old 09-13-2011, 10:22 AM
 
Location: the Beaver State
6,477 posts, read 6,220,275 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by HonuMan View Post
Thanks. My approach has been to pour several pots of boiling water on the plant. That's kept it away for up to two years at a time, but apparently I never quite kill the roots.

A couple years ago, I was helping gather willow branches to build a Native American sweat lodge, and I got into some poison oak. I never want to experience that again -- the itching was terrible, and it lasted for over a month.
When younger, while blindly following some older kids, I wandered into some Poison Oak. They all came down with horrible itches, but I didn't have any problems at all.

It seems that my mother had poison oak when she was pregnant with me, and I some how became resistant to it. I still don't tempt fate, but when poison oak is dormant (fall and winter, when leaves have all fallen off,) about 1/3 of people can touch it freely with no issues.
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Old 09-13-2011, 01:41 PM
 
Location: Beaverton
28 posts, read 36,490 times
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To expand on your topic a little, other berries/fruits that are safe to eat include fruits of arbutis unedo (sp?) aka "strawberry tree." The fruits are bland, but safe. Snowberries are also bland but safe. Thimbleberries are safe and a little less bland, plus their leaves are soft and fuzzy, earning it the moniker "nature's toilet paper." Oregon Grape (mahonia) are edible but sour.
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Old 09-13-2011, 10:57 PM
 
19 posts, read 71,541 times
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Hmmm. That's an extraordinary ability. You can charge a lot of $$$ for removing poison oaks from people's yard. If I got such problem in my yard, I certainly wouldn't mind paying that extra cost

Quote:
Originally Posted by hamellr View Post
When younger, while blindly following some older kids, I wandered into some Poison Oak. They all came down with horrible itches, but I didn't have any problems at all.

It seems that my mother had poison oak when she was pregnant with me, and I some how became resistant to it. I still don't tempt fate, but when poison oak is dormant (fall and winter, when leaves have all fallen off,) about 1/3 of people can touch it freely with no issues.
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Old 09-14-2011, 01:28 AM
Status: "oddly pleasant for Nov" (set 19 days ago)
 
Location: Milwuak-IE Or-again
687 posts, read 494,791 times
Reputation: 1180
Look up Blue lake park. The field surounding that area have a carzy amount of raspberries. I always see people picking them along Marine Dr. Out in east county on the way to edgefield. The plants are actually a pest so most people dont care if you pick them. Just make sure you wash them.
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Old 09-14-2011, 10:24 AM
 
Location: Portland, OR
1,082 posts, read 1,280,349 times
Reputation: 1214
Quote:
Originally Posted by hamellr View Post
When younger, while blindly following some older kids, I wandered into some Poison Oak. They all came down with horrible itches, but I didn't have any problems at all.

It seems that my mother had poison oak when she was pregnant with me, and I some how became resistant to it. I still don't tempt fate, but when poison oak is dormant (fall and winter, when leaves have all fallen off,) about 1/3 of people can touch it freely with no issues.
My dad is the same way. He lives in the East, where the culprits are poison ivy and poison sumac. He knows he's come into contact with it more than once in his life, but he's never gotten a rash from it. For people who are allergic, though, I've read that each exposure produces a worse reaction. The chemical that causes the reaction is extremely potent. It's presence in the plants is an evolutionary mystery, since it doesn't affect non-humans.
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Old 09-14-2011, 01:15 PM
 
758 posts, read 1,373,526 times
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Most of the berries you see by the roadside, in parks and fields, etc. are Himalayan blackberries. They're a nuisance plant but the berries are quite good. Don't eat white berries or small red ones (Red Elderberry). The multifaceted berries (salmonberry, thimbleberry, and the blackberries) are safe to eat. Do be aware that along railroad tracks and some roadsides, herbicides are sprayed on the plants.
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Old 09-14-2011, 03:19 PM
 
Location: Cleveland Heights OH
13,547 posts, read 10,513,468 times
Reputation: 13147
My former next door neighbors taught their grandkids that the name of the Red Elderberry was "Poisionberry" so they would not eat them.
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Old 09-15-2011, 01:18 AM
 
Location: Wilsonville, OR
1,157 posts, read 864,153 times
Reputation: 1841
Thanks for reminding me about this. The local park near my house has an enormous amount of blackberries growing in it. I noticed them by accident last year and completely gorged myself on them. I don't think I've ever tasted anything so good. I am going to the park first thing tomorrow and picking as many as I possibly can.
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