Weeds in the City   05.24.12

I wanted to share this blog post by Kristen Baumlier. Kristen joined us for SPACES' Walking Tour of Historical, Useful and Tasty Weeds on May 19 lead by Leslie Williams, Herbalist and Herbal Educator.

Posted by: Kbaumlier/tinySPLASH bigVIEW
Posted on: May 21 2012
Images from the tour:

Historical, Useful and Tasty Weeds - Weeds Walking Tour @ SPACES

Yesterday I went on part of the Walking Tour of Historical, Useful and Tasty Weeds which was led by Leslie Williams, Herbalist and Herbal Educator.

The tour started at SPACES gallery, and we walked around the block for the tour.

As we would walk, Williams would point out weeds, bushes, and trees that could be used as food, medicine, and for other uses. We did not get very far – because surprisingly almost every weed along the way was something that was edible or useful.

Williams would share historical stories, and I learned a lot about some of the weeds that I see everywhere in Cleveland.

Some of the things that we found on the walk were:

Mugwort – which can be used to help with sleep. It is put in dream pillows, and you can also make a tea.

Lamb's Quarter – a weed I see everywhere and is tasty. You can eat it like spinach.

Dock – which is a "bitters." You can use the root and boil it to make a bitters which is good for the stomach

Wild Grapes – you can eat the leaves and cook with them. Also the fresh tendrils growing are good to eat and are a tasty snack when hiking

Burdock – they are a good tonic and the seeds are good to eat. Many years ago these were considered a "secret ingredient" for salves that people made to feel like they could "fly."

Garlic mustard – a known weed in the Midwest – you can eat the small leaves or the seeds.

Aster – you can eat the flowers. They are said to improve your vision, but Williams said she has not experienced this.

Primrose – you can make primrose oil from the root which is rich in Omega -3 vitamins and really good for you.

Japanese barberry bush –the root is a good substitute for goldenseal. It makes a slightly bitter yellow tea and is good for allergies. This bush was first planted ornamentally – and now is invasive and spreading.

Catnip – good for stomach cramps, also good to induce sleep.

Milkweed – the fibers were used to make parachute cords in WWII. Some say you can boil the milk weed and then eat – others say you can just eat.

Blackberries – you can eat the leaves, they are a good tea. Similar to raspberries they are good for the muscles. You can crush them, dry them, then the ferment a little like black tea.

During the walking tour, Williams urged us to always try a little bit of a plant – and see how you react. She advised to not eat a whole bunch of something until you know it is safe to eat.

I was surprised to learn that so many weeds are edible or useful. It makes me see weeds in a new light. I still plan to pull them out of my flower beds at my house, but maybe will consider to use them for something before putting them in the compost.

Want to learn more about weeds?
Williams belongs to the American Herbalist Guild, and will be doing historical artisan work in the Cuyahoga National Valley Park near Cleveland this summer on herbal medicine, ethnobotany and native herbs for dying fabric.

You also can look up on various wild food sites, which list different plants and their uses.

Leslie Williams Website:
Forager Harvest Site:
SPACES Walking Tour Information:
UPCOMING SPACES Walking Tour Information:

 Historical, Useful, and Tasty Weeds – Weeds Walking Tour @ SPACES   photo by Kristen Baumlier
Historical, Useful, and Tasty Weeds – Weeds Walking Tour @ SPACES photo by Kristen Baumlier

Keywords: , edible and useful weeds, kristen baumliér, leslie williams, spaces, tinysplash bigview, walking tour, weeds
Author: Marilyn Ladd-Simmons, Gallery Manager
Category: Events

Monster Drawing Rally 2012: Pictures   04.07.12

Monster Drawing Rally 2012 was excellent thanks in large part to the artists, volunteers and donors! New pictures keep rolling in. If you have some good shots, send them our way:

Keywords: events, monster drawing rally, pictures
Author: Christopher Lynn, Executive Director
Category: Events

Open Call: Monster Drawing Rally   03.15.12

This is an open call for artists to participate in the SPACES Monster Drawing Rally on Thursday, April 5, 2012. The first 15 artists to respond using the form below will earn a seat at the drawing table! All selected artists will be be notified of their participation as well as their drawing time slot by Wednesday, March 28th.

For more details, please refer to:

Note: the open call is now closed.

Keywords: monster drawing rally, open call
Author: Christopher Lynn, Executive Director
Category: Events

What's More Fun than Talking with Artist Christi Birchfield?   02.23.12

Talking with her TWICE, over a plate of cheesy mashed potatoes! And, here, finally, is your chance!

Birchfield, our current SWAP Resident whose installation It's All Yours: Posture Pointers to Make You Prettier is now up at SPACES is also showing at the William Busta Gallery. You can see both shows, and get a chance to speak with her about them at these two upcoming events:

- On Saturday, February 25, Birchfield will be at the William Busta Gallery with her show I'll Be Your Mirror from 2:00 - 4:00 pm.

- On Thursday, March 1, at 6:30 pm, join Birchfield, artist Johnny Coleman and the Baroness Maria von Alvensleben at SPACES for some truly gourmet mashed potatoes and some delicious dialogue. It's all a part of Mashed Thoutatoes, where three presenters share on three varied topics, that all get mashed up in a shared Q&A session at the end.

All that, plus real live cheesy mashed potatoes! What a deal!

Keywords: christi birchfield; johnny coleman; baroness maria von alvensleben; eva hesse; william busta gallery
Author: Kate Sopko, Residency Champion
Category: Events

Thursday in the Vault: Artists Mistaken for Movie Stars!!!   01.17.12

Taken side by side, many cannot tell the difference between Ben Kinsley and Jessica Langley, and Ben Kingsley and Jessica Lange.

To help you make the distinction, we've provided a helpful celebrity photo of artists Kinsley and Langley, who go one further than the movie stars, by MAKING THE MOVIES!

And they make movies about cats, which is even better!

Come join current SWAP residents Ben and Jessica as they debut Make CATopia Real, their collection of interviews of cats about what utopia means to them, Thursday, January 19 at 6:30 PM at SPACES. The night includes video works by Kate Gilmore, Brian Sabalauksy, Roger Beebe, and Karel van Laere.

Kinsley and Langley Fight Off the Paparazzi
Kinsley and Langley Fight Off the Paparazzi

Keywords: ben kingsley; jessica lange; ben kinsley; jessica langley; make catopia real; kate gilmore; brian sa
Author: Kate Sopko, Residency Champion
Category: Events

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