Tuesday, June 28, 2011

The Tree Year: Update

Whoa! Have I ever been seriously remiss on my Tree Year posts. My last ones were in March. I should have known that once gardening/foraging/wildcrafting season got going full swing, other things would get put on the back burner (like most of my dirty dishes!)

I mean the catalpa is in full bloom. It's almost done blooming in fact.

Aren't they gorgeous? They look like orchids, and smell wonderful. I love having such an exotic, tropical looking tree in this northern climate.

I'm not sure how many more posts I'll manage to get in over the summer, but I am still observing my trees and watching for changes throughout the seasons.


Artizan said...

One of my favorites!

Carolyn said...

THAT'S what that tree is!! Cool!
Cambridge has a number of these trees but I never knew what they were! What is significant about them besides their smell and leaf size? Anything a forager/prepper should know?
Thanks for the post!

Amber said...

Carolyn, the Native Americans reportedly used the bean pods kept among their belongings to keep away pests and insects and wove baskets out of the pods for those same properties.

There is some history of use in herbal medicine, of other Catalpa species, using the pods and seeds in the treatment of asthma and other bronchial complaints.

I suspect it would be anit-parasitic internally as well.

The leaves were bruised and applied to skin sores and ulcers that would not heal.

The bark was used in much the same way.

A beautiful tree and useful too!