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‘Bad’ weed not so bad

I am writing in regard to the “Bad-news weed” letter to the editor on Sept. 1. Reading the letter, it didn’t take me long to recognize the medicinal herb grindelia, which can be used to make medicine to soothe poison oak itch taken externally, and also to help with breathing problems when made as a tincture and taken internally.

There are even companies that pay good money for the grindelia tops when picked at the right time, and when the field is far enough from roads and pollution to be concidered organic. And yes, it seems to grow by itself, never needing water or tending. What a miracle! There are many healing plants like this that seem to grow spontaneously on cleared and bulldozed land.

So, another man’s noxious weed is someone else’s medicine. And after three years, [the letter-writer] has still not identified the plant he hates so much.



Joyce Phillips

North San Juan


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