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  • The Ethics of Enjoying Isla V... | Hoelle Lab

    The Trusted Ethnographic Source for UCSB and Isla Vista Monday, March 16, 2020 - ANTH JH Winter 2020 Home About Projects The Ethics of Enjoying Isla Vista Photograph by Alan Mak , Sept. 3, 2005 The tree on the sign is the `Isla Vista Tree,' which stood at the edge of Sea Lookout Park at on El Colegio. The tree fell off the edge of the bluff, and now there is only a plaque to commemorate it. The log of this tree recurs in a number of the community building efforts for Isla Vista. By Joshua Richardson March 16, 2020 The natural world around us exists as one of UCSB’s and Isla Vista’s biggest features. From the lawns, bushes, and trees on UCSB’s campus to its parks like Anisq’Oyo’ and the Sueño Orchard; even areas of environmental conservation like the North Campus and Camino Corto Open Spaces, each of these places are home to different types of plants, animals, and have different purposes for their existence. ​ At the beginning of my time here at UCSB, I found myself wondering what my place in the environment is. I love going for walks and exploring the world around me. I even started using the Ethnobotany Projects ’ plant database and map to help me find edible plants and medicinal herbs to make going outdoors even more fun. But, even with all my time spent exploring, I found myself wondering more about the needs and purposes behind the creations and maintenance of each place I went to. How is it that our use of these parks and open spaces, even possibly just being in them, is affecting them? How could they, in turn, be affecting us? To answer these questions, I reached out to a few of their caretakers to better understand our role in the environment and the things that I, and others, can do to help them continue to thrive. Photograph by Joshua Richardson The Sueno Orchard The parks in Isla Vista are arguably the most visual and prominent green, open spaces around us. They exist on almost every block and are not very difficult to find. With such easy access to them, people use them for a wide range of recreational activities like picnics, yoga, or even taking a nice stroll on a sunny afternoon. To learn more about them, and what work goes into taking care of them, I spoke with Joe from the Isla Vista Parks and Recreation Department at the Sueño Orchard. By Isla Vista Parks and Recreation Department During our conversation, it became clear to me Joe is very passionate about the landscape around him and for helping it thrive. When I asked him if there were any negative ways that people engage with the parks, Joe’s expression darkened. He told me that there are people who come to the parks, with the intention of helping the caretakers like himself, who ‘tend’ to the plants by pruning them. He pointed out a macadamia tree at the Orchard, that had actually been damaged overnight by a Good Samaritan who took it upon themselves to trim away some of the leaves and branches of the tree, exposing its bark to the sunlight. While it looked like a normal, average tree to someone inexperienced in gardening like myself, Joe told me that the tree was not meant to be this way. Macadamia trees, he said, like to have their bark shaded and protected from the sunlight, but that shade was taken from it when they took its branches. He cares for each individual plant as much as he does for the park as a whole, each of them making up the park itself and what it has to offer to the community. He hopes that people will come and make use of the Orchard, its fruits and disc course, and other parks in Isla Vista freely and openly, keeping in mind that there are limits to how much fruit one should take. Photograph by Joshua Richardson The Sueno Orchard Photograph by Joshua Richardson ​ The North Campus Open Space Other open places in the environment, like the North Campus Open Space (NCOS) have different types of nature and exists for different reasons. While it is open to the public like the parks of Isla Vista, its purpose is entirely different as a place of environmental conservation. The NCOS is home to an array of different plants and animals, some of which are being reintroduced to the area to restore it to its former state, from before it was converted into a golf course. Filled with signs that inform guests about climate change, environmental conservation efforts being made, and trail routes, the NCOS gives guests beautiful views and allows them to learn more about the environment and biodiversity of the Devereux Lagoon. To learn more about the NCOS, I spoke with Wayne Chapman from the Cheadle Center for Biodiversity & Ecological Restoration (CCBER) about the efforts that he and CCBER are making to conserve and protect the plants and animals that call the NCOS home. Photograph by Joshua Richardson Wayne, similar to Joe, told me that he likes seeing people out in the NCOS, jogging on the trails and that they do it often. One of his biggest concerns, though, was people’s tendencies to bring their pets along with them, taking them off of their leash when they do. With its population of wildlife growing anew, the open space is still a sensitive habitat where some animals may not feel entirely comfortable there yet. One such animal is the burrowing owl who, Wayne says, has taken up a temporary residence in the area. While Wayne and other caretakers from CCBER would love to see the owl re-establish the NCOS as its breeding ground, Wayne worries that dogs and stray cats may ruin the chances of that happening. “Taking your dog off of its leash,” he said, “makes the animal think that there is a large predator roaming around. What kind of animal would want to build a home and have its young in a place it feels unsafe?” Statistics from CCBER’s website show that 13% of NCOS visitors surveyed visit with their dogs, but one of the primary concerns recognized by all survey respondents was dogs being off-leash (33%). It poses a real threat to the conservation efforts when dogs dig holes, chase after animals, or bark loudly in sensitive habitat areas. The NCOS has different needs as a space, asking that we be mindful and respectful of the plants and animals that take residence there and that we use it as a place of reflection and learning. Whereas the parks in Isla Vista can be a place of active recreation, allowing for us to run, have picnics, let our dogs be a bit freer in their exploration, and even play disc golf, the NCOS is a place of passive recreation. We venture into the NCOS, but it is not a place to set up a picnic or allow our dogs to roam freely. As my interview with Wayne and research on the CCBER website show, it is a place to observe and learn, but not to disturb. Photograph by Joshua Richardson The UCSB Lawn, University Center Fidel’s first warning to anyone who uses the lawns or forages to fruit is simple: recycled water. As a result of California’s drought in 2014, the Goleta Sanitation District (as well as other cities throughout the state) have applied and been permitted to treat and create recycled water for distribution to places like UCSB. The State Water Board , the government organization that creates the guidelines for recycled water use, defines recycled water as “… water which, as a result of treatment of waste, is suitable for a direct beneficial use or a controlled use that… is therefore considered a valuable resource.” Fidel made it clear to me that it is important to be careful and wary of this water; to look out for any pipes, drains, or sprinklers that are purple because they contain recycled water which, if consumed, could make me sick. Section 2.3 of the Goleta Water Guidelines for the installation and implementation of recycled water pipelines requires that all piping be covered or made in the color purple to distinguish them from other water pipes and sprinklers. Their guidelines also require that recycled water not be allowed to runoff from where it is dispersed, be over sprayed, and that it should not be left to pool in the soil for over 60 minutes. Fidel confirmed this to me, telling me that any recycled water systems run on an automatic timer that usually only allows recycled water to be sprayed at night. Any place on university grounds that uses recycled water for irrigation should contain either pipes and drains that are marked in purple, signs that warn caution due to the use of recycled water, or both. By keeping an eye out for the color purple and any recycled water signs, you can greatly reduce the risk of consuming plants that have been irrigated with recycled water. Photographs by Joshua Richardson Caution: Evidence of Recycled Water ​ Another topic I asked Fidel about was UCSB’s use of pesticides and other chemicals on the grounds that could possibly contaminate some of the fruits available for foraging. He told me that, to his knowledge, the grounds are not sprayed often with pesticides and that, if someone wanted to harvest weed plants like sour grass or dandelions, to try to look for large numbers of them that grow together with other plants, like the patch of sour grass and ice plant near the Thunderdome. Photograph by Joshua Richardson Sourgrass Patch Kids If it’s only one or two nestled into other flowers or plants, there is a good chance that it has been treated with chemicals to kill the weed. Therefore, Fidel recommends being wary of where the plant is, how much of it there is, and what types of other plants and flowers surround it. Fidel, himself, likes to be adventurous and tries to indulge in some of the plants and fruits he cares for, using these guidelines. ​ If there’s one thing to be said from what I’ve gathered during my interviews, it is first that being outside in Isla Vista is an amazing experience. As the home to edible plants, beautiful parks, and environmental conservation areas like the North Campus Open Space, it is loved and treasured by many people, especially those who take care of it. While I absolutely encourage venturing out and engaging with the nature of Isla Vista, I believe that we should also recognize that different spaces require different methods of engagement and of recreation. Engaging in the natural resources at UCSB, unlike the parks, requires a more mindful touch. We have to be wary of recycled water, observant of the plants in close proximity to the ones we are interested in, and cautious with how and what we eat. Sure, we can practice both active and passive recreation on campus, but we have to be mindful of how we do it to ensure we aren’t accidentally foraging plants that could have been watered with recycled water. The North Campus Open Space, however, is a place of visitation, of learning, and of passive recreation. Mindfulness in a space like this is being conscious of the efforts being made to preserve the plants and animals and aware of what trails you take. Each place has different needs for how we engage with it, whether that be passively or actively, and it’s up to us to think more about what they are and what they could be. We each have a part that we in our environment and we can affect it, simply by bringing dogs out for walks without their leashes in the NCOS or misusing plants, as much as it can affect us, like by accidentally consuming recycled water. Being mindful of the plants, the spaces, and of ourselves, will help keep us from harming the plants themselves, taking too much from them at one time, and help us and the environment around us thrive and flourish together. By Isla Vista Parks and Recreation Department Isla Vista Peace Course ​ While we were there, Joe told me that one of his main goals for the parks is to see people use them. Seeing people do yoga at the parks on the bluffs, having picnics with their friends, and just being out and enjoying them brings him joy. He takes care of the Orchard and the parks so that people will be more inclined to go out into them and be a part of the world around them. Isla Vista’s Peace Course that starts at the Sueño Orchard, he told me, is actually the home to a disc golf world record for most holes made in 24 hours, made by a student named Mike Sale back in 2013. The NCOS and the parks of Isla Vista are two different types of recreational spaces, but there exists a third, more variable space in between the two, UCSB’s campus. UCSB is home to a large collection of edible and medicinal plants and fruits. It’s one of the most unique features of our university campus, the availability of fruits to forage and eat. In addition to these, there are also a lot of open lawns where students can sit and read a book, study, or hang out with their friends. With great resources and open spaces, it would seem like UCSB would allow us to be almost care-free in our use of the landscape. However, in an interview I had with Fidel, one of UCSB’s groundskeepers, I learned that this may not always be the case. Recycled Water Recycled Purple Recycled Water 1/2 About the Author: Joshua Richardson Thank you so much for taking the time to read through this article. My name is Joshua Richardson. I am a third year Anthropology student at the University of California, Santa Barbara. Although my time at UCSB has been short as a transfer student, I am so glad to have had the opportunity to create this work and share it with everyone. I hope that you learned as much from reading this article as I did researching and writing it.

  • Database | Hoelle Lab

    Home Database Maps Guidelines Engaging Ebot Cultivating Communities IV ETHNOBOTANY PROJECT Plant Database Edible & Medicinal Plants Fascinating Flora BEFORE YOU FORAGE: Please enjoy educating your taste buds, but PLEASE DO NOT take any unnecessary risks if you are unsure about a plant and check out our Foraging Guidelines before you interact with any plants. In addition, many plants on this page are NOT edible, so please pay special attention to the map labels and descriptions below to determine which plants are edible and which ones are not. Edible and Medicinal Edible, Useful, & Medicinal Plants Welcome to our ever-growing database for edible, medicinal and useful plants found in Isla Vista! Enjoy educating your taste buds, but please do not take any unnecessary risks if you are unsure about a plant. When collecting edible plants be sure to use your own common sense and always check the listed information to ensure correct location and identification of edible plants. These plants are fed with reclaimed water, so be sure to wash what you collect before consumption! This page is constantly being added to, so keep an eye out for new additions! ​ Click on the icon of the plant you are interested in the table of contents to quickly learn more about its edible or medicinal uses, or scroll down to explore our long list of detailed plant entries. Table of Contents: Blackberry Bluedicks Chickweed Dandelion Fig Firethorn Ice Plant Kumquat Lavender Lemonadeberry Lemon Loquat Mallow Manzanita Miner's Lettuce Mugwort Nastertium Natal Plum Oregon Grape Pickleweed Pindo Palm Pineapple Guava Pineapple Weed Plantain Prickly Pear Cactus Rosemary Sage Sour Grass Strawberry Guava Strawberry Tree Wild Radish Blackberry Common Names: Blackberry Latin Name: Rubus sp. Spanish Name: Zarzamora There are 11 different species of wild blackberry in the state of California. Himalayan Blackberry (R. discolor), one of the more common and fruitful in California, exhibits five leaflets that are oval shaped and toothed. Thimbleberry blackberry (R. parviflorus) is the only one of the four weedy blackberries that is non-thorny and non-vining and has a simple leaf as opposed to multiple leaflets. Cutleaf blackberry (R. laciniatus) has five leaflets that are rounder and lobed. California blackberry (R. ursinus) has three leaflets. These brambles grow as vines and produce a sweet blackberry. Himalayan blackberry and Cutleaf blackberry are non-native weeds, whereas California blackberry and Thimbleberry are native, but are considered weeds in certain conditions. The best time of year to collect wild blackberries is in July and August, but plants will differ in the times that they are ripe. To harvest, simply pick the ripe blackberries off the plant, while being cautious of thorns. The plants can live upwards of 25 years, and the spread of their seeds is facilitated by the many animals that eat them. WARNINGS: Thorny Stems; Poison Oak can look similar to Wild Blackberry: it has three leaflets that are ovular and have lobed margins, and are shiny green in summer, turning shiny red in fall. To tell them apart, blackberry usually has thorns on the vines and fuzzy leaves, poison oak should have neither. ​ Location in IV/Campus: Various locations in open spaces; massive bush by the FT side of Santa Ynez housing; in the Camino Corto Open Space by the little bridge and spread through the trees ​ Recipes: Pie , Jam , Cobbler , Ice Cream Blackberry Bluedicks Common Names: Bluedicks, Blue Dick, Wild Hyacinth Latin Name: Dichelostemma capitatum The Bluedick is a native, spring perenial of the west coast of North America from Oregon to Baja, and as far east as Utah, that springs up from a edible bulb or corm. It can be found from sea level to 7000 feet throughout most of California, and commonly found in sunny, grassy places and after disturbances. The leaves are very long and narrow, and hug the tall, central stem of the single flower stalk that is tipped by a cluster of blue-purple flowers of six petals that meet in the white and yellow center. The leaves can smell onion-y when crushed. To harvest the corm, keep in mind you should wait until the plant has fully died back for the winter. The corms were a good source of starch in many indigenous diets, either raw, ground into flour, or cooked slowly for sweeter flavor; they were planted in wild gardens, dug up with digging sticks and were known to be eaten more often than acorns by some groups. The flowers are also edible. Gardeners say that these plants are relatively easy (in comparison to other CA bulb plants) to grow from bulb and seed if you want to start a native garden! WARNINGS: As this is a sparse native plant, be careful not to overharvest by taking only one or two bulbs out of any given patch. Location in IV/Campus: Bluedicks can be found in the wilder areas of Isla Vista and in the Los Padres National Forest to the North Bluedicks Chickweed Common Names: Chickweed Latin Name: Stellaria media Spanish Name: Pamplina For gardeners the world over, chickweed is unwanted and hard to get rid of, but to the avid forager, it’s a mild, tasty spring snack! This invasive Indo-European plant grows as a thick, sprawling ground cover in damp, mostly shady places, usually in areas that have been regularly disturbed by humans. The leaves are rounded tear drops, bright green and no bigger than the nails on your smaller fingers; these leaves grow in pairs that alternate (north-south pair on top of an east-west pair). The small white flowers have five deeply lobed petals that may appear to be ten very small petals. And most importantly, this plant has a very fine line of hairs down one side of the stems (IT MUST HAVE THE LINE OF HAIRS OR IT IS NOT CHICKWEED). You should also be able to gently pull the stem apart and the outer layer of the stem will separate while the inner layer should stretch out. Chickweed purportedly has vitamins A, B, C and D, the elements Ca, K, P, Zn, Mn, S, Cu, Fe, Si (it is comparable with spinach in nutrient content) and has been used in traditional medicine to help with inflammation , digestion, bad skin, and to restore those recovering from bad illnesses, amongst other uses. ​ WARNINGS: If the plant you’re looking at has red or orange flowers, OR seeps a milky white fluid, OR doesn’t have flowers, it is NOT the right plant--DO NOT EAT IT; Spurge and Scarlet Pimpernel are poisonous look-alikes. ​ Location in IV/Campus: these plants can be found in many places, especially where it is damp and where you can find other annual weeds ​ Recipes: Pesto, Salad, and dishes ; Salad and Pesto Chickweed Dandelion Common Names: Dandelion Latin Name: Taraxacum Officionale Spanish Name: Diente de león As a wild growing plant, it is considered a weed. Dandelion is in the sunflower family and has bright yellow flowers with many small petals (rosettes) or large white seed heads (blowballs or clocks) that develop on long, unbranchd, hollow stems. Its flat green leaves are jagged and develop directly from the root, growing almost parallel to the ground. It has a long white or brown taproot. The entire plant is edible but the flowers and young leaves are mainly eaten and have an earthy, slightly bitter flavor. Dandelion can act as a laxative and a diuretic and can detoxify the body. It is high in vitamins A, B, C, and D, minerals like calcium, iron, potassium, zinc and magnesium. Dandelion can bloom twice a year and are best from spring through fall. To collect, pull directly from the base where the leaves and stem meet the earth (if roots are desired), or pluck individual parts. ​ WARNINGS: Dandelion may be sprayed with herbicides. Make sure harvest areas are not contaminated and wash well. Dandelion also has lookalikes such as bristly oxtongue, sow thistle and prickly lettuce (most also edible), but precautions should be taken. ​ Location: Nearly anywhere: grass lawns, dirt patches, cultivated gardens, roadsides and areas that have not been recently mowed or weeded. ​ Recipes: Dandelion stirfry , other recipes , flowers can be made into a tea, roots can be made into coffee, flowers and leaves can be added to salads. Sautee or blanch leaves to remove bitterness. Dandelion Fig Common Names: Fig Latin Name: Ficus carica Spanish Name: Higo Common fig can be easily identified by its large dark green leaves, spanning 10 inches long and 5 inches wide, identified by its greenish, brownish or purplish pear shaped fruit of size 2-4 inches. Each leaf has a deeply lobed shape with between three and five lobes per leaf and are thick and leathery with smooth sides. The Common fig tree can grow up to thirty feet with smooth white bark and droop often as they grow. This tree is native to the Middle East and Mediterranean region. Interestingly, the Fig tree has it's very own symbiotic relationship with the Fig wasp (Agaonidae) who does most of the tree's pollination. Figs are highly nutritious fruits, containing vitamins such as A, E and K all of which aid with vision, skin and blood pressure, respectively. Figs are also high in fiber, which aid digestion and control blood sugar. Figs are great for snacking raw, smoothie bowls, and toppings for yogurt! WARNINGS: Fig fruit is safely edible, but fig leaves are not in high doses. Fig leaves are also generally advised to not rub on skin due its high latex content and milky sap. For this reason it is advised to rinse the fruit before ingesting. Not all figs are edible, weeping fig (Ficus benjamina), for instance; always make sure to ID the plant before ingesting. Location: CCBER gardens, Sueno Rd, Campus Green near Physical Sciences Building and Chemistry Building, North Hall courtyard Recipes: No-bake fig newton energy bites (vegan) , C aramelized figs with balsamic vinegar (vegan) Fig Firethorn Common Names: Firethorn Latin Name: Pyracantha coccinea Firethorn is a shrub that belongs to the family Rosaceae. It can group up to 10-15ft It is native to the area the covers Southwest Europe to Southeast Asia. When mature, the fruits are small, spherical, and red. The flowers on the Firethorn bloom from late spring to early summer. Berries are edible with an apple-like flavor, and best collected in late autumn. The berries are NOT edible without some processing. In Britain, Firethorn is an important source of nectar for bees during times when other plants are not blooming. ​ WARNINGS: The fruit on the Firethorn is only edible after it has been crushed and washed under running water. If eaten in large quantities, Firethorn fruit can cause stomach pain due to the fact that it is mildly poisonous. No other part of the Firethorn plant than the processed fruit should be eaten. Location on campus: Firethorn is located just inside the Western entrance to South Hall, and on the South side of Kerr Hall. ​ Recipes: Firethorn Jelly , Firethorn Sauce Firethorn Ice Plant Common Names: Ice Plant Latin Name: Carpobrotus edulis Spanish Name: Doca Iceplant is a robust perennial succulent shrub that is native to coastal South Africa. The plant is abundant and considered an invasive species on California’s Mediterranean coast in which it thrives. The plant grows in a thick and dense mat-like way. Its thick succulent stems grow horizontally and curve upwards. Flowers generally appear in late winter to spring and can be yellow, pink, and purple. The ice plant’s fruit appears once the flower dies back and is edible. The fruit is yellow and fleshy when ripe and resembles a fig or spinning top. Hypothetically, the flavor is salty and sour, mildly sweet when riper; a taste test showed us that the flavor is very bitter and an unpleasant aftertaste persists for some time. Early spring in California regions is the best time for collection. Simply pick the fleshy fruit (resembles a spinning top), it will be yellow in color when ripe and can be eaten fresh. The outer layer is astringent and is ideally removed before eating the more jelly-like interior, where the seeds are located. Ice plant was introduced in California during the early 1900s for coastal erosion mitigation; the plant still outcompetes many native coastal plants to this day. Ice plant can inhibit the natural movement processes of sand dune environments. In South Africa the ice plant’s fruit is sometimes referred to as a sour fig. ​ WARNINGS: Ice plant grows along bluffs and steep coastal cliffs, as well as all throughout IV. DO NOT harvest ice plant close to cliffs. ​ Location on campus: Campus point bluffs ​ Recipes: Fruit can be eaten fresh, Ice plant jam AKA Sour Fig Jam Ice Plant Kumquat Common Names: Kumquat, Gold Orange Latin Name: Fortunella The kumquat tree is shrubby and compact, standing between 8-15 ft tall. The branches are light green while the leaves are thin, dark green and glossy. Flowers can be white. The tree bears fruit, edible raw, that are oval-oblong or round that are about 1-1.5 inches wide. The peel is golden-yellow to red orange. The flesh can be " extremely mouth-puckeringly" sour, while the skin is not bitter and the seeds are also edible. The kumquat tree are believed to be native to China, since they were first mentioned in Chinese literature dating back to 1178 A.D. Overall, they are perfect for toppings on cereals, oatmeal, and they makes a great zest for salads, and have been used traditionally by Chinese and Vietnamese cultures to help colds and the flu. ​ WARNINGS: Just make sure to rinse fruit before ingesting whole! ​ Locations: Sueno Orchard and Phelps road off of Stroke Rd next to the Stroke Ranch ranch apartments Recipes: For colds and flu , Candying and Marmalade Kumquat Lavender Common Names: Lavender Latin Name: Lavandula Purple flower bush with small leaves and circular shape. Small circular shaped/pruned plant with individual stems that have both small purple flowers and small green leaves. The purple flowers taste distinctly floral are used as flavor, garnish, baking ingredient, perfume, house/drawer/clothing fragrance, etc. Collect the flowers by the stem, if for consumption remove the small purple flowers from the stem after harvesting. Thought to help cure insomnia when used in essential oil form for smelling purposes. Lavender is also used for other aroma therapeutic purposes. Lavender oil is also thought to increase hair growth when applied to the scalp. You can collect lavender and dry it for around two weeks for storage, use, or scent. Historically, lavender was used for bathing and scents. It is from the mint family. ​ WARNINGS: Consumption of lavender oil is toxic. Some individuals may be allergic to lavender. Can cause skin irritation in some individuals. ​ Location on campus: Right side of Student Resource Building in the direction of Pardall tunnel but farther behind the building. ​ Recipes: Lavender-Honey ice cream , Vanilla-lavender cake , Lavendar smoothie Lavender Lemonade Berry Common Names: Lemonade Berry Latin Name: Rhus integrifolia Small red/purple clusters of berries on large green-leaved bushes. Large green bushes with clusters of small purple/red berries and small pink/red flowers that have five petals. Berries are edible and taste like the tartest lemonade you never wanted to drink (think warheads level of citric acid). Their texture is strangely sticky. In spring, pick berries from cluster by hand and cleaned before consumption. Pick berries when dark red/orange. Both the berries and leaves can be used for thirst avoidance. Berries can be soaked in water to create a drink. The leaves and branches can be used to dye cloth. Relieves coughs and fevers. Tea from the leaves used to treat coughs. Ground seeds drink used to treat fever. The Chumash used to make a drink from the berries, hence the name. ​ WARNINGS: The bark produces sap that can be irritating to some individuals’ skin, similar to poison oak. ​ Location on campus: Near/around the lagoon ​ Recipes: Lemonadeberry juice, dried Lemonadeberries, Lemonadeberry syrup, Lemonadeberry jelly, Lemonadeberry jell candy , Sumac Lemonade Lemonade Berry Lemon Common Names: Meyer Lemon Latin Name: Citrus x meyeri Spanish Name: Limón There exist many different varieties of lemons that are edible. Thought to be a cross between the lemon (Citrus limon) and mandarin orange (Citrus reticulata), the Meyer lemon is a popular variety and has some unusual features. While light orange in color, the fruit has the distinct oblong shape of a lemon and is about 3 inches in length. Meyer lemons have a slightly sweeter taste than most lemons, but still more closely resemble lemons than oranges in taste. The tree can grow up to ten feet tall and produces fragrant white flowers. The leaves are shiny and dark green colored. The best time of year for lemons is generally in the fall and winter, but older trees may flower and produce fruit at almost all times of the year.3 Lemons can be used in a variety of foods and drinks for flavor, and the peel can be used as “lemon zest” for flavoring. Healthwise, lemons are a good source of vitamin C. ​ WARNINGS: THORNS; Lemon trees can have branches with thorns of various sizes. Use caution in order to avoid punctures and scratches. ​ Location in IV/Campus: The Urban Orchard in Storke Plaza, Sueno Orchard ​ Recipes: Lemon Desserts , Plethora of recipes of all types , Meyer lemon specific recipes , Meyer Lemonade , Meyer Lemon Bars Lemon Loquat Common Names: Loquat, Bronze Loquat Latin Name: Eriobotrya japonica, Eriobotrya japonica, Eriobotrya deflexa Spanish Name: Níspero The loquat tree is native to China and is widely planted as an ornamental plant in California . Loquats have been cultivated in Japan for over 1,000 years, and the country still produces the largest loquat crop in the world, annually producing around 17,000 tons of fruit! The evergreen, simple, oblong leaves of the tree are large, leathery, deeply veined and dark green. The loquat fruits grow in bunches in the tree and have 2 to 8 seeds. When mature, the fruit is velvety, oval-shaped, and yellow in color, and can be eaten raw. Fruit can range in size from marble to hacky-sack sized. To collect the Loquat, simply pick the fruit off of the tree. Flowers on the Loquat tree bloom in the fall and the tree generally fruits in early spring. Loquat fruits are high in fiber, antioxidants, vitamin a, vitamin c, potassium, and other beneficial minerals. The loquat leaf likewise has a range of health benefits, including blood sugar regulation and anti-inflammatory effects. Another variety of loquat is the Bronze Loquat; this tree produces smaller, darker colored fruit in fall, and is also edible. ​ WARNINGS: Seeds in the loquat fruit are poisonous and very large. When consuming the fruit raw, spit out or eat around the seeds. ​ Location in IV/Campus: South side of Broida Hall. Various locations in Isla Vista. Sueño dog park. Across the street from 7/11. ​ Recipes: Loquat Leaf Tea , Loquat Jelly , Loquat Pie , Loquat Chicken , Our Loquat and Brussel Sprout Salad Loquat Mallow Common Names: Mallow, Cheeseweed Latin Name: Malvaceae Spanish Name: Malva There are many different kinds of mallow growing wild in California, all considered weeds. Annual plants, they come up with the first rains of the season and begin to dig in a thick, woody taproot, allowing them to be seen year round. The fruits, although green and often wrinkled, look akin to small wheels of cheese or flat pumpkins because of their 10-12 wedge shaped sections; each section contains a seed. Leaves are slightly fuzzy and have 5 to 7 lobes, veins radiating from a central point, wavy shallow-toothed edges, and a crinkled appearance, as though someone balled up a piece of paper; they can be very small to broader than a human hand. Grows in a spreading manner, often low to the ground, although some species can exceed 5 feet in height. Flowers are very small; white, purple or pink in color; have 5 notched petals that may appear as 10 petals; grow where the leaves meet the stems. No poisonous look-alikes! Ground Ivy has similar leaves but flowers are very different. It is edible as well. Begin growing after first rain, but can be seen year round. Flower in spring. All parts of plant are edible: Leaves, flowers, stems and fruits/seeds. Soft and hairy at first touch, but a little slimy texture when chewed; very mild taste. The mucilaginous property (sliminess) of the plant makes them soothing for various types of inflammation. Can be used topically like aloevera and cactus by putting on sunburns and inflamed skin13.Can also eat them as a remedy for coughs and colds. Contains calcium, magnesium, potassium, iron, selenium, vitamin A, vitamin C. Other plants in the same family are cotton, hibiscus and okra. The original ingredient of marshmallow, Althaea officinalis, is in the same family! Can accumulate nitrates at levels toxic to cattle. Used as a survival food during war or crop failure. Grows on 6 of the 7 continents. ​ WARNINGS: None! ​ Location: Any open space, disturbed earth, open field, dirt patches, agricultural areas. ​ Recipes: Used as salad greens and potherbs 8 , Marshmallow/whipped cream recipe , A bunch of quick recipe ideas , Mallow Fritters , Mallow Soup Mallow Manzanita Common Names: Manzanita Latin Name: Arctostaphylos spp. Spanish Name: Manzanita (little apple) The Manzanita is characterized by bark that is reddish to orange in color, waxy leaves, and gnarled trunks. They can grow as shrubs or small trees with a height ranging from a few feet tall to over twenty feet. The manzanita produces bell shaped flowers from winter to spring that range from white to pink. Manzanitas grow on dry coastal slopes and in canyons throughout South western North America. The berries and flowers of the manzanita can be eaten raw or cooked. The fruit can be eaten raw or cooked, but the raw fruit is dry and mealy. The fruit can be dried and crushed into powder and be used in soups, breads, and sprinkled on other dishes. The raw fruit can be crushed raw to make a cider. Native Americans would use the apple-like fruits to create meal and cider. ​ WARNINGS: Of the 60 Manzanita species, some of the manzanitas are protected, including the A. cruzensis, A. edmundsii, A. Luciana, A. pilosula, and A. refugioensis. Location in IV/Campus: Manzanita can be found in restoration areas and the Los Padres National Forest. ​ Recipes: Manzanita flower tea , Manzanita Punch Manzanita Miner's Lettuce Common Names: Miner's Lettuce, Miner's Green Latin Name: Claytonia perfoliata Miner’s lettuce is an herbaceous annual, low growing with many round, lily-pad-like leaves that surround the pinkish stems. Juvenile leaves start out pointier and in a very different shape than their succeeding stages. Several (or many) very small, white or pale pink flowers bloom in the center of that round leaf, each with five petals. This plant is native to North America and has naturalized in Britain. It is found in damp areas, mostly in the shade of disturbed ground or steep slopes. The leaves are great raw in a salad (along with the stems) or cooked, although beware their bitterness later in the season and it is slightly mucilaginous . Pick the plants in late winter and spring. Miner’s lettuce is very high in vitamin C, A and Fe, and is known to be a diuretic, minor laxative, and has been traditionally used to treat rheumatism . Use it to detox and help the lymphatic system. Fun fact: it’s pollinated by flies! It’s lovely name comes from its use by miners during the gold rush to prevent scurvy. They were also eaten by Native Americans. WARNINGS: none ​ Location in IV/Campus : These can be found growing in damp, unattended areas with other ‘weeds’ ​ Recipes: Salad Miner's Lettuce Mugwort Common Names: Mugwort Latin Name: Artemisia douglasiana Chumash Name: Molush Mugwort grows to be 7ft tall, but is usually about 4ft tall. The stalks are erect with few branches. The leaves are about four inches long, oblong and divided into at 1-7 lobes. Above the leaves are dark green. Below, the leaves are white from many hairs. Flowers are very small and are hidden by dense leaves. The plant leaves have a very pungent sage smell and bitter taste. Mugwort is found from Baja California to Washington and Idaho and tend grow in riparian corridors and can be found in dry or moist shaded areas and on a variety of soil types. Mugwort is a cleansing herb and highly medicinal with many uses: the leaves can be chewed on but spit out to relieve tooth pain, the leaves can also be used as a hand sanitizer by simply rubbing the hands together with the leaves. Culturally, mugwort leaves and stems are placed under a sleeping pillow to keep evil spirits away and promote good dreams, and have been burned as smudge sticks for energy cleansing. Some indigenous groups would rub their bodies with mugwort after someone died so they would not be haunted. Because dried mugwort is an amazing source of tinder, this plant was used to start fires and even cauterize wounds. Mugwort is best used as a tea for premenstrual, menopausal syndrome, hot flashes, and dysmenorrhea. Use only one leaf, do not add any sugar and drink only one mug a day. Crushed leaves can be rubbed directly onto the skin or made into a wash to prevent and clear up poison oak rashes. ​ WARNINGS: Mugwort contains many active compounds such as cineole, camphor, linalool and thujone which can induce convulsions and renal damage if ingested in large doses. The recommendation is to use a single leaf to avoid any harmful effect. They tend to grow, albeit conveniently, near toxic plants like poison oak. Mugwort should NOT be consumed by pregnant woman. Be aware: Ragweed is a look-alike that causes extreme cases of hay fever. Location: Camino Corto Open Space, the path from Commencement Lawn to Depressions Beach, Lagoon Island, campus restoration areas, grows wild often in wetter areas (look for creeks, ponds and seasonal washes/drainage) Recipes: Poison oak remedies , Lucid dreaming Mugwort Nasturtium Common Names: Nasturtium, Indian Cres Latin Name: Tropaeolaceae Majus Low ground cover or climbing vine plant; many branches from vines. Orange or red or yellow flowers; 5 petals. Pale to deep green, rounded, undulating cloud shaped leaves; 8 prominent veins per leaf coming out from a center point on the leaf towards edges. Leaves and Flowers (especially of young plants) are edible. Pungent, peppery, sharp “plant” flavor of leaves and flowers. Can bloom all year long. Flowers fade during extremely hot summers or cold winters. Gently pick or cut flowers and leaves from the main stems of the vine. Expectorant: helps clear mucus from lungs (cough remedy). Diuretic: increases production of urine. Aperient: purgative or laxative. Disinfectant. Contains isobutyl isothiocyanate, glycotropeoline, spilanthol, oxalic acid, vitamin C. The seeds of the Nasturtium plant were used as a substitute for pepper during World War II. Nasturtium means “nose twister” in Latin. This name refers to people’s reactions when they taste it. ​ WARNINGS: Nasturtium can cause skin irritation. Pregnant or breastfeeding women should not use this herb. People with kidney, stomach, or intestine problems should not use this herb. The medical community doesn’t recognize the benefits of this plant. Always consult a medicine practitioner before using herbs as medicine. ​ Location: Often in overgrown areas. Located on campus near Girvetz. Sueño Orchard. Seen in Isla Vista Neighborhood. ​ Recipes: Can be eaten straight off the plant or added to salad, Nasturtium Pesto ; Our Nasturtium Pesto ; Juice: cough remedy. Dried: powdered ripe buds can be used as a mild laxative. Flowers can be eaten for vitamin C, to help overcome and prevent the cold and flu. Compress/Topically: can be used on small cuts to prevent bacterial infections. Infusion: used for internal infections Nasturtium Natal Plum Common Names: Natal Plum Latin Name: Carissa macrocarpa The Natal Plum is a shrub that is a member of the family Apocynaceae. It is native to South Africa. When mature, the Natal Plum is oval shaped, and red in color. If the fruit is green, it means that it is not mature. The Natal Plum plant has white flowers, inch long, poisonous thorns and deep green leaves. In coastal areas with moderate climates, the shrub that carries the Natal Plum produces fruit year round. To collect the Natal Plum, one should gently pull the fruit directly off the shrub. The fruit is the only edible thing on the shrub that carries the Natal Plum; it is sweet and delicious if ripe, otherwise the after taste is quit unpleasant. The Natal Plum is a great source of Vitamin C. Vitamin C increases immunity, improves gum health, and provides many more general health benefits. To get the benefits of the Natal Plum, eat the fruit. Contains sufficient pectin and acid, facilitating the making of firm gels in jelly. The Natal Plum contains latex, which is used to make rubber. The Greek name for the Natal Plum translates to “keep away from the dog.” ​ WARNINGS: Make sure only to eat the fruit on the shrub; all other parts of the plant are poisonous except the fruit, including the stems and leaves. There are thorns on the shrub that carries the Natal Plum, so exercise caution when collecting the fruit. The plant also contains latex in the form of a milky fluid, which is a fairly common allergy so please proceed with caution. ​ Location on campus: The Natal Plum is located on the East side of the Thunder Dome, and bordering the bike racks by De La Guerra Dining Commons. ​ Recipes: Natal Plum jelly and pie. Can also be incorporated into fruit smoothies and blended drinks. Natal Plum Jam , Natal Plum Jelly/Jam ​ Interesting article from a natal plum enthusiast Natal Plum Oregon Grape Common Names: Oregon Grape, Holly-Leaved Barberry, Mountain Grape Latin Name: Mahonia aquifolium, Berberis aquifolium Spanish Name: Uva de Oregon Holly-Leaved Barberry, also known as the Oregon Grape and Mountain Grape, is an evergreen shrub native to western North America. Its flower is the state flower for the state of Oregon. The plant has dark green, holly shaped leaves, which can sometimes turn red to purple during winter. Its leaves are leathery and glossy, with sharp points resembling small teeth. In early spring, the plant produces clusters of yellow flowers that turn into dark purple/blue, dusty berries that resemble grapes, although it is not actually related to grapes. These berries are quite tart and leaf a bad taste in the mouth, but edible regardless. The shrub generally grows to be about 3-6 feet tall. Native Americans used the bark of the shrub to make yellow colored dye. ​ WARNINGS: Leaves resemble English holly leaves; English holly produces red berries that are toxic to humans. ​ Location in IV/Campus: Planter box in parking lot west of Bren Hall. By bike loop on the way to CCBER main offices ​ Recipes: Jelly Orgegon Grape Pickleweed Common Names: Pickleweed, Sea Asparagus, American Glasswort Latin Name: Salicornia pacifica Pickleweed is a low lying perennial that is located along both the west and east coasts of North America and parts of the Gulf of Mexico. It thrives in salty environments with little wave action, which includes shorelines, salt marshes, and tidal flats. Its green stems grow up to 1 meter and have a jointed and notably pickle-esque appearance. Flowering stems produce purple upright flowers. Can be picked year-round. More green during summer with some red hues in fall. The above ground parts of the plant are edible4 with a very salty taste. Simply pick the green stems off of the plant. The name glasswort comes from the plant’s use as soda ash for glass making in the 18th century. ​ WARNINGS: This plant is located at restoration sites for salt-marshes and wetlands, so be considerate of the fragile and managed environment when collecting. ​ Location on campus: Around Campus Lagoon ​ Recipes: Sauteed Pickleweed, Pickled Pickleweed, Various Salads Pickleweed Pindo Palm Common Names: Pindo Palm Latin Name: Butia capitata The Pindo Palm is a slow growing palm tree native to Brazil. It can reach heights of around twenty feet. It has a stout trunk leading up to a canopy of dull greyish to green fronds that curve towards the trunk. The fronds exhibit spikes on either side of the main stem structure. The fruit it produces is edible and grows in bunches in its canopy. The fruits are round and pebble-sized, can be yellow and orange-red, and fall to the ground when ripe. The flesh and skin surrounding the seed of the fruit is edible and has a sweet and tangy pineapple-tropical flavor; it is unique to most fruit you have probably tried. The flesh is very fibrey and juicy. The fruits are a good source of carotene and can be used to make jams, jellies, and juices. ​ WARNINGS: The fruit has a large seed inside; be careful not to bite down with too much force or swallow the whole fruit. ​ Location on campus: In front of the arts building on the gravel, grass, and bordering the bike racks. ​ Recipes: Jelly Pindo Palm Pineapple Guava Common Names: Pineapple Guava Latin Name: Feijoa sellowiana A flowering tropical evergreen shrub or multi-trunk tree with shiny foliage and white undersided ovular leaves. Stands between 18-25 feet tall and wide. The flower has a sweet pineapple, apple and minty fragrance and looks like a bright pink firework with pink hairs in the center of 4 white to purple-tinged, curled petals. The flowers and fruits are edible. The fruits are light to deep green, round to oblong with a 4-pronged obtrusion opposite the stem. The fruit is safe to eat whole and raw; the skin is tough and bitter but the inside is sweet and almost gooey with small edible seeds. Pineapple guava fruit season is early November to December but can last until early Spring depending on the area. Ripe pineapple guavas will fall to the ground. It has been used in salads in South America, along with chutneys and deserts. The feijoa has no known medicinal properties, but it is sometimes used as a digestive aid and cosmetic exfoliant, and its skin has been studied for its antibacterial properties . This tree is native to native to Southern Brazil and attracts bees, squirrels, and birds . The fragrant aroma is due to the ester methyl benzoate compound in the fruit . ​ WARNINGS: None. ​ Location on campus: All around IV and campus. Along sidewalks and parking lots. ​ Recipes: Quick Bread ; Loaf, Curd, Jam, Salad, Bread, & Pie Pineapple Guava Pineapple Weed Common Names: Pineapple Weed, Street Weed, False Chamomile Latin Name: Matricaria matricariodes Spanish Name: Hierba de piña Pineapple Weed is a low growing plant with fine, feathered leaves, and smells of pineapple when crushed. The flowers are small, yellow, composite cones without petals. It grows in many places in both polar hemispheres, typically where the soil is dry, disturbed and otherwise unpleasant for many other plants. The flowers and leaves can be eaten raw or in tea; the flowers can be dried out and ground into flour. It has similar properties to its cousin, Chamomile: helps with relaxation, sleep, digestion and colds. It can also be used as an insect repellent. ​ WARNINGS: It looks similar to Chamomile, Mayweed and Dog Fennel, although when crushed, Pineapple Weed smells like pineapples. Try to harvest it in places where dogs and chemicals can’t reach the plant. Some people are allergic to this plant. ​ Location in IV/Campus: These plants can be found most places in Isla Vista and in some weedier areas on campus. ​ Recipes: Tea, Cookies, Jam Pineapple Weed Plantain (Narrow & Broadleaf) Common Names: Narrow and Broadleaf Plantain Latin Name: Plantago lanceolata, Plantago major There are two types of plantain found on campus, the broadleaf and narrowleaf. The leaves are rounded with a point on the end and have slightly jagged or wavy edges. Leaves are usually arranged in a basal rosette, even more commonly with the stockier broad leaf plantain. They have 5-7 parallel leaf veins with a rough texture on both sides and a fibrous root system. When flowering in late spring-fall, plantain grows a long, 8in stalk with tiny flowers. The ripe seeds from this stalk can be collected, ground and made into a flour. The leaves are edible and are best picked when they are young for salads. Older leaves can be soaked in salt water for 4 minutes and cooked like spinach. Broadleaf plantain also has medicinal uses. It can be chewed and placed on stings, cuts or poison oak rashes to ease inflammation. ​ WARNINGS: None. ​ Location on campus: All around IV and campus in lawns (broad leaf), weed patches, disturbed sites, lagoon island (narrow leaf). ​ Recipes: Sesame and Wilted Plantain Sauté , Plantain Soup , Plantain Chips , First Aid Ointment ; Our Insect and Bee sting remedy Plantain Prickly Pear Cactus Common Names: Prickly Pear, Cactus Pear, Indian Fig Latin Name: Opuntia spp. Spanish Name: Nopal, Tuna The prickly pear cactus is a common name for the genus Opuntia which represents many varieties of prickly pear cactus, including beavertail and Santa Rita cactus. The cactus is native to the United States and South America but can be found around the world. The cactus has fleshy, flat oval pads, called pencas in Spanish, with defensive spines and smaller glochids, or hair-like spines. The varieties can grow up to 20 feet tall. The pads produce bright and brilliant flowers from late spring to early summer that range from yellow, orange, pink, and red. The flowers grow on the tip of the cactus pads and can grow up to three to four inches wide. After the flower has finished blooming, the prickly pear fruit, or tuna in Spanish, form. The edible fruit is pear shaped and varies in color from green (less sweet) to red (very sweet). The fruit has a sweet taste and the taste changes depending on variety of prickly pear. Many have described the flavor of a prickly pear fruit as melon, strawberry, watermelon, or citrus. Harvest prickly pear fruit anytime from early Spring through late Fall. The pads of the prickly pear are edible and taste like green beans. The younger, greener pads are often harvested and eaten as they have the fewest spines and are more tender. Some Native Americans used the fruit to make candy and chewing gum. Native Americans used the sap from the pads on cuts, burns, and bruises to soothe the wound. Traditionally, the young pads can be used as a laxative and can be used to treat diabetes. ​ WARNINGS: Be careful of spikes and glochids or the pads and fruit. Glochids will easily fall off from the cactus and imbed in skin and cause irritation. ​ Location in IV/Campus: Can be found near Fortuna behind the Camino Corto Open Space ​ Recipe: Cactus salad (ensalada de nopales), Nopal cactus taco recipe , Prickly pear juice (agua de tuna), Prickly pear jelly Prickly Pear Cactus Rosemary Common Names: Rosemary Latin Name: Rosemarinus officinalis Short bush with fragrant branch extensions and small flowers. Low-the-the-ground bushes with straight branches covered with small light purple flowers and fragrant branch extensions. Branch extensions, small purple flowers are edible and used as herbal topping, flavor, scent, or fragrance. Pick the rosemary by the branch and remove the pieces from the branch to add as seasoning/topping/ flavoring. It has a strong herbal aroma. Used as an essential oil/ topical. Rosemary essential oil is beneficial for hair growth. ​ WARNINGS: None. ​ Location on campus: All around IV and campus. Along sidewalks and parking lots. ​ Recipes: Rosemary potatoes ; Our Rosemary Shortbread Cookies Rosemary Sage Common Names: Sage (Common Sage/Garden Sage) Latin Name: Salvia officinalis Sage is native to the Mediterranean region and is a part of the mint family (Lamiaceae). It has purple flowers (other colors may include pink, white, and red) and ovular downy leaves which have a pungent smell and vary in color from green-white to green-gray. The plant generally grows to be 2-3ft high. Sage is a perennial plant and can be collected year-round. Simply pick the leaves off of the plant. Used as an aroma therapeutic, spiritual cleansing, scent. The flavor is herbal and earthy with a rather strong scent. May alleviate indigestion, inflammation. May have mild antiseptic and antibacterial qualities. Sage was believed to improve memory and increase mental capacity in medieval Europe. Burning dried sage is practiced and believed by some to promote protection in an area (such as a house or shelter). ​ WARNINGS: Thujone is present in some species and can cause kidney damage, seizures, and other ailments if taken in very large doses. ​ Location on campus: Near UCSB greenhouse. Near Manzanita residence halls. ​ Recipes: Edible uses, Tea (soak the leaves in hot water) , flavoring for meat, especially poultry recipes Sage Sour Grass Common Names: Sour Grass Latin Name: Oxalis stricta This common perennial has yellow flowers with five parts and can grow up to 50-100cm in height. Leaves are alternate and form three heart shaped leaflets, much like a three leafed clover. We have observed the plant to bloom during the rainy season when it begins to warm up; it needs a lot of water. Pick leaves, flowers or stems to chew on. Tastes sour, but in a pleasant way, although can occasionally be extremely tart. Oxalic acid gives the plant its sour taste. A yellow-orange dye can be made of the plant by boiling it. ​ WARNINGS: Oxalic acid is toxic in large doses ​ Location on campus: Found in newly disturbed, wet areas like fields and planters that have gone wild. ​ Recipes: Sour Apple Spritzer ; We made a raspberry flavored tea by soaking chopped stems in boiling water. Sour Grass Strawberry Guava Common Names: Strawberry Guava Latin Name: Psidium cattleyanum Spanish Name: Guaya fresa The Strawberry Guava is a tree native to Brazil that belongs to the family Myrtaceae. The fruit of the Strawberry Guava is spherical, small (about 4 cm long), and red/purple in color when ripe. It has glossy, green, oval leaves and white flowers with five petals. The Strawberry Guava produces fruit year round. Trees on campus produce ripe fruit at different times depending on their location. To collect, simply pick the fruit off the tree. The fruit only lasts 1-2 days at room temperature. The Strawberry Guava is sweet, but also has a slight tang. The fruit tastes like its name, with flavors of strawberry and guava. The fruit is high in antioxidants and has anti-inflammatory effects. The Strawberry Guava helps with digestion because it contains a large amount of fiber. It helps prevent scurvy because it contains Vitamin C. The Strawberry Guava is also known as cherry guava, purple guava, and cattley guava. Strawberry Guava is an invasive species on the Hawaiian Islands. It has invaded hundreds of thousands of acres on the islands and threatens to spread even more. Non-native pigs and birds facilitate its spread when they eat the fruit. ​ WARNINGS: Only eat the fruit of the Strawberry Guava, as it is the only part of the plant that is edible. ​ Location on campus: West side of South Hall, South/East side of Harold Frank Hall, and Robertson Gymnasium. ​ Recipes: Jam , Juice , Jello Strawberry Guava Strawberry Tree Common Names: Strawberry Tree Latin Name: Arbutus unedo The Strawberry Tree is a relatively short tree, 15 to 30 ft high. When mature, the fruit of the Strawberry Tree is spherical, small, red in color, and has a rough and bumpy outer layer. The texture is strange on the tongue. White bell shaped flowers grow in small clusters. The bark is a reddish-brown color that peels in the sun. The leaves are green, glossy and serrated. It is an evergreen and often used ornamentally. The fruit is the only part of the Strawberry Tree that is edible. The fruit is best to eat in Autumn, when the fruit matures. Simply pick the fruit off the tree. It has a sweet taste, and has flavors that have hints of strawberry and peach. May lower blood pressure and fight against colds. Contains tannins and Vitamin C. The tree is related to Manzanitas (aka refrigerator trees). The bark peels because it gets sunburnt! The Strawberry Tree is part of the Coat of Arms of Madrid. The Coat of Arms depicts a bear eating from a Strawberry Tree. The Strawberry Tree was mentioned by Ovid, a Roman poet from the first century BCE, in his work titled Metamorphoses. In Ireland the ballad “My love’s an Arbutus” correlates the strawberry tree and true love qualities ​ WARNINGS: Make sure to only eat the fruit on the tree. Under ripe fruit can cause nausea. Overripe fruit can cause intoxication ​ Location on campus: There are Strawberry Trees located on the South side of Broida Hall, on the South side of the Humanities and Social Sciences Building, in the Girvetz courtyard, along El Colegio heading West from campus towards Santa Ynez housing, as well as near Webb Hall. They are all over campus. ​ Recipes: Jam ; To make the herbal tea, soak the Strawberry Tree leaves in a cup of hot water. Other things like lemon zest can be added to improve the taste. Strawberry Tree Wild Radish Common Names: Wild Radish Latin Name: Raphanus raphanistrum, Raphanus sativus Spanish Name: Rabanillo Wild radish is a common annual weed in the mustard (brassicaceae) family and is native to eurasia. The roots of the wild radish are edible, but are often smaller and less appetizing than radish from the grocery store. Leaves are lobed and tough, and grow off of a bristly stalk that grows up to two feet tall. The leaves can be eaten raw and cooked and are best collected when they are young. Its flowers are edible and have four petals up to about an inch long. Flower colors range from white, pink, purple, and yellow, and can exhibit a streaking pattern. Wild radish hybridizes with cultivated radish, contributing to the range of colors seen in its flowers. Spring and summertime are generally the best time to forage this plant. The seed pods of the radish are also edible. The pods grow off of the stem, have a long roundish shape, and are around one to three inches long and up to ¼ of an inch wide. ​ WARNINGS: Try to avoid eating these in places where dogs could have urinated on them or where people are spraying pesticides. ​ Location in IV/Campus: Found in weedy fields intermixed with grasses, and other disturbed areas. ​ Recipes: Pickled wild radish pods ; Sautéed wild radish ; Wild radish pesto Wild Radish Fascinating Flora Fascinating Flora UCSB campus has an astounding amount of botanical biodiversity thanks to a wide range of people from horticulturists and the environmentally minded, to home gardeners and restorationists. Each has had a unique hand in shaping the quirky, beautiful landscape that we see today. Some of these plants are in collections from specific continents, or are meant to reflect native California ecosystems, while still others mind the drought and require little water or were planted as part of the Edible Campus Project so students can get free produce. There are even hidden gems that to most just look like a nondescript plant but to the informed is a window into the mind of the botanist that planted it. ​ The wonderful Mediterranean climate of Santa Barbara also allows for a massive variety of plants to grow and reproduce, making this the perfect place for an exotic garden collection. UCSB is home to many rare and endangered species. Without further ado, let’s explore them! Table of Contents: Particularly Pulchritudinous Plants Bauhinia purpurea Senna pendula var. Glabrata Spathodea campanulata Eschscholzia californica Strangely Structured Stems Agave attenuata Araucaria bidwillii Bambusoideae Fascinating Phloem Facts Metasequoia glyptostroboides Typha latifolia Particularly Pulchritudinous Plants Oddly enough the word pulchritudinous means beautiful! This campus is home to some of the most gorgeous plants you will see in California. I speculate this is because the school uses recycled water on the plants, which means that more water can be used without "wastage". Many plants need a lot of water to grow beautifully, which is why native plants in this state rarely have huge flowers or broad leaves (read: it rarely rains and we are constantly in a drought). Bauhinia purpurea Also known as the Orchid Tree, Butterfly Tree, and my personal favorites: the Camel's Foot Tree and Gorro de Napoleón (Napoleon's Hat). But don't let the name fool you! It is not actually in the Orchid family, but in the Legume family. This lovely plant is native to southern Asia. It has a potentially record breaking method of seed dispersal: it can shoot them as far as 49 feet from the parent tree! The bark, roots and flowers have been used in traditional medicines, not to mention many parts are eaten! Senna pendula var. Glabrata The misnomer Easter Cassia, or the more correct Winter Senna, are both common names for this lovely yellow flowering invasive legume. Native to tropical South America, but naturalized in many parts of the world due to its weediness, this showy plant is the bane of many experienced gardeners and the bell of Christmas-time landscaping in warm regions. Find this lovely plant in the courtyard between the Life Science and Noble Hall buildings. Spathodea campanulata Also known as the African Tulip Tree, Fireball, Flame of the Forest, Fountain Tree, Pickari, Nandi Flame and Squirt Tree; the latter name comes from the strange quality of how nectar can squirt from the flower if squeezed properly. The tree is native to tropical Africa (surprise surprise) and can reach 80 feet tall in its natural range, but is stunted in dry California. It is considered one of the world’s top 100 most invasive species; although this is only seen in wet areas. The flowers are considered “perfect,” which means they contain both male and female parts. The seeds of the yellow flowering tree are infertile and to a graft must be used from another tree to grow a new one. The flowers are a very interesting trumpet shape and the buds look like clusters of animal claws. Eschscholzia californica The Eschscholzia californica, known as California Poppy, as golden poppy, flame flower, copa de oro (cup of gold), among other names is a deep-rooted perennial and flowering annual plant native to the western United States. It is one of 11 species of poppies that naturally occur in the western United States. The flowers stun many with its brilliant orange, yellow, or cream hue and satiny petals. Native Americans used poppies for a myriad of purposes, including food and medicine. The roots were used as a sedative and analgesic and the petals chewed like gum or candy. However, the California poppy may be toxic when used without sufficient preparation. Bauhinia purpurea Senna pendula var. Glabrata Spathodea campanulata Eschscholzia californica Strangely Structured Stems This section is about all the funky looking plants we have on campus. The wide variety of adaptations seen in plants exist for any number of reasons, and some times for no reason at all! Adaptations can assist in: attracting specific or general pollinators; attracting specific herbivores which will digest their seeds in a way conducive to germination; or scaring away or harming other herbivores; reacting to seasonal environmental disturbances such as fires or floods. There are many other reasons for traits in plants; you name it, some plant somewhere probably has that adaptation. Come explore some of the interestingly adapted plants we have on campus. Agave attenuata Also known as Foxtail, Swan’s Neck or Lion’s Tail Agave. They send their reproductive parts high into the air (10 feet) to protect them from herbivores. Bats are their biggest wild pollinator. Agave are succulents, much more closely related to the Asparagus family than the cactus family. These plants are monocarpic, meaning once they flower they die. Agaves are used to make tequila and syrup. Indigenous people to North America, the Hohokam and Navajo, used agave as food. Agave reproduce via ‘pups’ which are tiny plants the grow from the flower stock, rhizomes and along the main trunk of the plant. Araucaria bidwillii Also known as the Bunya Bunya Pine, can be found along the main bike path in front of HSSB. This tree exhibits a dark brown, thick trunk and its leaves are a glossy green color, stiff, and pointy. This tree can grow up to a 150 feet tall and culminates in a domed peak. Horizontal branches are arranged in as regular pattern. The seed cones can be larger than bowling balls. Cones resemble coconuts from afar on the tree, although up close look more oval shaped. It is native to south-east Queensland, Australia. Nuts inside of the pine cone are edible raw and ripe between December and March, although they should be eaten within seven days of falling from the tree. Acts as an antimicrobial preventing food poisoning and food from spoiling. Aborigines in the tree’s native habitat in Australia used to make peace between tribes for the harvesting of the seeds without disputes. When collecting the cones watch for ones that are falling; if hit it they can prove fatal. The leaves/branches are sharp and rather painful to pick up or step on. Bambusoideae Bamboo is a flowering plant that is a member of the subfamily Bambusoideae, which is in the larger grass family Poaceae. It is found in a variety of both hot and cold climates. Bamboo forms green stalks that extend upwards, almost vertically, from the ground. The bamboo stalks contain leaves, which are also green. Bamboo is one of the fastest growing plants in the world, due to its rhizome dependent system. Some species of bamboo can grow to be 1300’ tall. Bamboo flowers are rarely seen because most species flower every 20 to 120 years. Bamboo flowers gregariously, which means that all plants with the same parent plant will spontaneously begin to flower at the same time, regardless of geographic location, and will continue to flower for several years until all of the flowering plants die to make room for the next generation that was just seeded. None of the bamboo varieties on the UCSB campus are edible; raw shoots, even in the edible types, have a chemical called cyanogenic glycosides that is toxic to humans if not destroyed by thorough cooking. Bamboo shavings are used in Chinese medicine to combat cold and flu-like symptoms. Bamboo sap and leaves are used in Chinese medicine to fight fevers. Agave Araucaria bidwillii Bambusoideae Fascinating Phloem Facts This section talks about plants with interesting histories and adaptations. Metasequoia glyptostroboides The dawn redwood, a deciduous tree of Chinese origin, was shocking to us because of the fact that it loses its needles with the changing seasons--something that very few conifers do . Another amazing fact about this tree is that, up until recently, it was thought to be extinct ! It was rediscovered in a small province in China, growing in wet valleys and being used as food for cattle . Due to its historical hiddenness and small relic distribution, it was known by its fossil record before it was known as an extant species . This lovely tree went from a nearly extinct species to a widely used ornamental plant, giving it its status as a Chinese conservation icon . Find this lovely plant in the courtyard between the Life Science and Noble Hall buildings. Typha latifolia Cattails also go by Espadana (Spanish), broad-leaved cattail, reedmace, candlewick, and bulrushes. They are native to almost all the Americas, Africa, and western Eurasia. Cattails upright perennials that are largely recognizable due to their cigar-like flower with a yellow spike on top; this cigar-shaped flower is the female flower, while the spikes are the male flowers. The male and female flowers rest on top of a long, green stalk (6 - 12 feet). Cattails play an important role in their ecosystems as they cleanse waterways and provide habitats for many different organisms. Certain parts of the cattail are edible, such as the pollen, young flower and roots, and were used by Native Americans, like the Pueblo, Chumash, and Ojibwe to make flour due to their high starch levels. Cattails also have many other uses besides sustenance: the “cigar” part of the cattail can be used like down for jackets, coats, pillows, among other things; the leaves can be woven into mats and baskets; they can be used to make poultices and as an antiseptic; and a myriad of other uses not explored here. WARNING: Do not confuse the cattail with the wild iris, which is a poisonous look alike for juvenile cattails. Metasequoia Typha latifolia References General Project Resource: Bauhinia purpurea Senna pendula var. Glabrata Spathodea campanulata Eschscholzia californica Agave attenuata Araucaria bidwillii Bambusoideae Metasequoia glyptostroboides Typha latifolia Blackberry Bluedicks Mother Nature’s Backyard. (2017). “Plant of the Month (March): Wild hyacinth (blue dicks) – Dichelostemma capitatum.” [Blog]. Recuperated from The Nature Collective. “Blue Dicks: Dichelostemma capitatum.” [Blog]. Recuperated from Richie, Bill. (2011). “Blue Dicks, Desert Hyacinth: Dichelostemma capitatum.” Project Noah. [Blog]. Recuperated from Chickweed Hen of the Wood. (2016). “Foraging: Identifying Wild Chickweed.” The Foraged Foodie. [Blog]. Recuperated from Wild Edible. “Chickweed.” [Blog]. Recuperated from Wild Abundance. (2016). “The Glories of Chickweed: Uses, Cultivation, Recipes, and More.” [Blog]. Recuperated from Penniless Parenting. (2013). Foraging Chickweed-Wild Edibles.” [Blog]. Recuperated from Dandelion Fig Firethorn Ice Plant Kumquat Lavender Lemonade Berry Lemon Loquat Mallow Manzanita Miner's Lettuce Medicinal Herbs. “Miner’s Lettuce.” [Blog]. Recuperated from's-lettuce.php Plants for a Future. “Claytonia perfoliata-Donn. Ex Willd.” [Blog]. Recuperated from Edible Wild Food. “Miner’s Lettuce: Claytonia perfoliata.” [Blog]. Recuperated from Superfood Evolution. “Harvesting Miners Lettuce, a Wild Green Super Food.”[Blog]. Recuperated from Mugwort James D. Adams Jr. and Cecilia Garcia. 2016. Healing with Medicinal Plants of the West. pp39-41. Print. Natal Plum Oregon Grape Pickleweed Pindo Palm Pineapple Guava Pineapple Weed Plantain Elias, T. and P. Dykeman, (1990). Edible Wild Plants: A North American Field Guide to Over 200 Natural Foods. Stirling: New York. Prickly Pear Cactus ​​ Sage 00000aacb362&acdnat=1509317763_5e7fde6568651a8c10eae9850c6a53e1 Sour Grass Strawberry Guava Wild Radish

  • Karma Ch 3 | Hoelle Lab

    Home About Projects Image by Karma Rhythm Chapter 3: Where to Get Sustainable Resources So I did a little research and came across some interesting resources that I think will help anybody who is interested in gardening locally. ​ First off, Island Seed and Feed is our local organic garden-supply and pet-supply shop. They are located in Goleta and are very established, having served the community with knowledge and organic products since the late 80’s. ​ At the local Farmer’s Market, farmers sell their homegrown products at these gatherings and most fruits come equipped with a seed. Most farmers are not selling seeds outright. Sometimes specialized seeds or heritage seeds are sold by collectors. The Santa Barbara Farmers Market sets up shop in Goleta on Sundays from 10am to 2pm. ​ Stores like our local Dollar Tree can provide more affordable options for students, though these options may be less sustainable. It is important to consider any store bought seeds have been delivered to stores and are less sustainable than seeds cultivated locally. This consideration can apply to more specialized stores as well, but I think it is especially important to consider when buying supplies from larger chain stores. These seeds may be lower quality than those found at specialty shops as well, or may be mass produced. ​ Manure is an important resource and is available to students who garden at the GHGP. Manure is useful because it contains lots of nutrients like nitrogen which enrich the soil and encourage growth once absorbed. According to GardeningKnowHow, only certain types of manures are appropriate for garden fertilization, mainly cow, horse, chicken, sheep and rabbit. There is also some very nutritious soil available to students who garden at the GHGP, which is hand mixed by the expert botanists at CCBER on site. It is important to ask them initially before just taking the soil though, as there are two piles and the other pile contains their best soil they use in some of their local restoration efforts. Visit Island Seed & Feed Visit the Farmers Market Read Chapter 4 Sources: Gardening KnowHow: Gardening KnowHow Gardening KnowHow Old Farmer’s Almanac

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