Page 7 - Chehalis Tribal Newsletter - April, 2017
P. 7


Nettles offer us strength
and energy during a
generative time. They are our
first edible greens to emerge
in early spring. You can find
nettles in fields, streambeds
and disturbed areas with
rich wet soil from the coast
into the mountains.
Nettles are often referred
to as a super food and are
one of the highest plant
sources of chlorophyll,
vitamins, amino acids and
minerals including calcium
magnesium and iron.

Volunteers assisted in
preparing the ingredients
used for spring nettle soup
during a class on nettles
at the Elders Center.

NETTLES and edible plants as she tea, pesto, soup and snacks. they were to repeat, “I will
harvested nettles. Elise demonstrated the be strong for my tribe! I will
From page 1 be strong for my ancestors!
The Chehalis Reservation process that eliminates the I will be strong for future
from the wild. is rich in materials to make stinging properties of nettles. generations!
No, we didn’t have to steal medicines and edible plants.
Volunteers assisted in When the northern warriors
them from anyone’s yard! We Charlene Abrahamson preparing ingredients for came, the elders, adults and
shopped in Mother Nature’s shared her knowledge on spring nettle soup and pesto. children stood shoulder to
garden on the Chehalis recognizing different edible The aroma of the roast and shoulder on the shore singing
Reservation. plants. She taught plant various ingredients floated in their song.
names, what they are used the room.
On our own grounds for, where they are found and The people did this as the
harvesting techniques. This The pesto and soup were canoes came closer. They
The weather cooperated as was a good break during the both tasty. The tea was showed no fear.
the sun popped its head out harvesting as she continued very nutritious, and many
and smiled down, offering to gather nettles for the class appreciated samples provided The warriors sang their
warmth as the morning fog meal. by Elise and Charlene. songs in their canoes and
dissipated. approached the shores where
Healthy bounty Some class participants the people stood. They noticed
The Tsapowum Behavioral took leftovers home to be they were not afraid anymore
Health Program provided After returning to the shared with the rest of their and left.
gloves, scissors and paper bags classroom with fresh nettles in families.
to assist in collecting nettles. tow, participants helped make The moral of the story:
a delicious meal that included History lesson Together as a nation, we are
Originally, the class was stronger. We are never alone
scheduled to have a field Elise shared a story that was to handle what life can throw
trip to Olympia. After some originally told by Lower Elwah at us.
discussion, it was decided to Storyteller Roger Fernandes
harvest in our local area. regarding the nettle. Elise admitted that she
didn’t sing, but you can
Participants were taken “Little Nettle”: How our find Roger’s story and song
to an ideal location near the ancestors lived in fear. They teaching how nettle saved
river that provided a variety of would hide from the warriors the people at
natural medicines and foods. that traveled by canoes and watch?v=FKOez3zhuUY.
came down from the north to
Elise demonstrated pillage the coastal tribes to the Elise also provided a
techniques to safely harvest south. When they appear, they handout explaining the
the stinging nettles during the would hide in fear. healing properties of the
spring season. stinging nettle. Copies of the
One of the elders was sent recipes used in the class were
She did caution everyone a message from the plant included.
to avoid harvesting from people, the nettle. To become
agriculture or high-traffic stronger, they were instructed She thanked everyone for
areas because nettles absorb to use the stalk to continually coming and urged participants
contaminants. whack at their bodies. to try their hand at creating
the recipes at home.
Elise also pointed out how When using the nettle,
to identify other medicines
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