How To Get Rid Of Poison Ivy In Flower Beds Yellow Root and Goldenseal – To Dig Or Not to Dig the Root

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Yellow Root and Goldenseal – To Dig Or Not to Dig the Root

Yellow root and goldenseal is a plant that has been used for generations to “treat” a number of common ailments. Given its effectiveness in relieving everything from mouth sores to PMS, many people would like to learn how to get their own supply of the golden yellow plant.

First things first. Make sure you have permission from any private landowner before hunting on their property. Hunting Goldenseal on government property can get you fined and possibly jail time. Yellowroot also grows in the same places as poison ivy, make sure you know what you’re pulling or you’ll need the herb’s “anti-itch” properties sooner than you think.

Where to find it

The plant grows on stream banks, mostly in the eastern half of the United States. Some grow west of the Mississippi, but are commonly found from northern Florida to southern Maine.

How does it look like

First of all, Goldenseal and Yellow Root are the same plant. It’s just given different names in different parts of the country. Average plant height is eighteen to twenty-four inches. The leaves resemble parsley. The plant is deciduous. The best way to find out if this is what you are looking for is to remove a nail and peel some bark off the stem. The inner flesh is bright yellow. I suggest you take a small sample to your local advisor or agricultural agent before ingesting any plant you find in the wild.

Okay, I found it and identified it. What now?

Once you find a yellow root, you get permission to take it and if someone who really knows identifies it for you, don’t dig up the plants. Pull the Goldenseal up by grabbing the stem on the ground.

The roots are actually just a mass of shoots. If you dig up the whole root, it won’t come back. If you pull out the root, then the root will sprout the following spring and you will have a yellow root to pull out in about two years. If everyone were to treat uprooting responsibly, generations to come would still have this valuable natural resource.

After you have uprooted the plant, remove the leaves and return them to the place where the plants came from. This will act as a natural fertilizer for new growth. Do not use400 any type of chemical fertilizer to encourage new growth. This will damage the aquatic life as well as pollute our groundwater. Now that you’ve extracted and “plucked” the Goldenseal, it’s time to take it home to finish the process.

It’s time to dry

Now cut the stems into six-inch pieces and place them on a stand about four feet from the ground. This should give you roots. Wash the roots in lukewarm water making sure to remove all dirt. Now put the roots on the rack. It is best to take the stems and roots of yellow root at night so that moisture does not re-enter them. The whole process usually takes about seven days to completely remove the moisture from the Goldenseal.

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