But the redbud isn't just pretty. Dried and powdered, the inner bark was an important medicine for native peoples. Indian healers used it to staunch bleeding, ease skin irritations and poison ivy rash, and treat sores and tumors. Bark tea was drunk to treat diarrhea and dysentery and used (like quinine) to reduce malarial fevers and ease joint and muscle pain and headaches. The flowers were also steeped as a tea and drunk to prevent scurvy, treat kidney and bladder infections, and ease urinary ailments. And just in case you're wondering--yes, those pretty blossoms are edible, in salads, teas, syrups. And the immature seed pods can be eaten like beans. All this, and pretty too!
Big thanks to all of you who have boosted A Wilder Rose to the top of the Kindle charts, and especially those who have added your reader reviews. It's been an exciting week around here. Can you just imagine Rose, shaking her head and rolling her eyes over all the fuss?
Reading Note, from Rose Wilder Lane, Diverging Roads:
“I’m sure of one thing,” she said earnestly. “It hurts to . . . to let go of anything beautiful. But something will come to take its place, something different, of course, but better. The future’s always better than we can possibly think it will be. We ought to live confidently. Because whatever’s ahead, it’s going to be better than we’ve had.”