This week, Linda Black Elk’s 3-week Ethnobotany course culminated in a mouthwateringly tasty potluck, all made with freshly picked ingredients and wild meat brought from home.
In fact, the during the whole third week Ethnobotany students did daily hands-on activities- making shampoo, lip balm and massage oil – all with the herbal ingredients they learned about throughout the week.
Many students were impressed with the class; LSI attendee Barb Dupris shared, “I’ve lived here my whole life, but I didn’t know what half of those plants were or how to recognize them.”
But it wasn’t only the students who were learning. Instructor Linda Black Elk commented, “I feel so thankful and blessed to have so many elders in my class this summer. I am learning so much from them and I hope they are learning a little from me.”
Linda was particularly excited to have Hazel Red Bird in her class.
“She is my sons’ grandmother. She hadn’t dug thíŋpsiŋla (Pediomelum esculentum; turnip) since she was a little girl of about 10 years old. Now she is 91. A few years ago, she made a bucket list. ‘Going out to dig thíŋpsiŋla‘ was on that list. I’m thrilled to say that we made that happen this week by taking her out on the hills behind Sitting Bull College and helping her dig her first thíŋpsiŋla in 80 years. It was very emotional for her and for all of us. She is a remarkable woman.”