Select Page

Apache ate an indigenous sweet potato

Apache ate an indigenous sweet potato

Several POOF readers have expressed interest in growing and re-domesticating the indigenous sweet potato.  We are gradually getting more information for you.

  1. The Apaches cultivated a “White Star Potato” which is actually a type of morning glory, indigenous to the Southern Piedmont and Blue Ridge Foothills.   Perhaps the tubers of this plant were traded westward over time.  The White Star Potato and Blue Star Potato Morning Glory species are endemic around an old Native American village site about a quarter mile north of my cabin.

2. The seeds of all members of the morning glory family, including cultivated sweet potatoes, are hallucinogenic.

3. Most Southeastern Morning Glories re-propagate each year via seed sprouting.   Species of Morning Glories that are cousins of the South American sweet potato also propagate from tubers.   They will be “bushy” shaped, whereas small tuber morning glories have long vines that can even establish new roots.

4. If experimenting with the consumption of indigenous sweet potato species be wary that some can have toxic levels of alkaloids.  In other words, the tubers may also be hallucinogenic or even harmful to one or more human organs.  Be careful.

5. It probably would be wise to check the PH of a wild tuber before giving any thought to eating it.    The higher the PH number, the more likely the tuber is to have dangerous alkaloids.  Tubers that have PH factors close to that of a cultivated sweet potato, are probably the safest.

6. A natural form of phenolphthalein in morning glory blooms determine their color. The redder the color of a morning glory flower, the more likely the tuber is to being safe.  A blue or purple bloom could possibly produce a highly alkaline and toxic tuber.

The following two tabs change content below.
Richard Thornton is a professional architect, city planner, author and museum exhibit designer-builder. He is today considered one of the nation’s leading experts on the Southeastern Indians. However, that was not always the case. While at Georgia Tech Richard was the first winner of the Barrett Fellowship, which enabled him to study Mesoamerican architecture and culture in Mexico under the auspices of the Institutio Nacional de Antropoligia e Historia. Dr. Roman Piňa-Chan, the famous archaeologist and director of the Museo Nacional de Antropologia, was his fellowship coordinator. For decades afterward, he lectured at universities and professional societies around the Southeast on Mesoamerican architecture, while knowing very little about his own Creek heritage. Then he was hired to carry out projects for the Muscogee-Creek Nation in Oklahoma. The rest is history. Richard is the Tribal Historic Preservation Officer for the KVWETV (Coweta) Creek Tribe and a member of the Perdido Bay Creek Tribe. In 2009 he was the architect for Oklahoma’s Trail of Tears Memorial at Council Oak Park in Tulsa. He is the president of the Apalache Foundation, which is sponsoring research into the advanced indigenous societies of the Lower Southeast.

2 Comments

  1. d.e.dunn89@gmail.com'

    I really appreciate your recent articles about the different food crops in the SE other than corn and beans.

    It is very interesting points about sweet potatoes. I did not realize that there were so many different types of sweet potatoes.

    I found a few different companies that sell heirloom varieties of sweet potatoes if anyone is interested in growing any of them.

    http://www.sandhillpreservation.com

    http://www.newhopeseed.com

    Sand Hill Preservation has the widest selection.

    Reply

Leave a reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Subscribe to POOF via Email

Enter your email address to subscribe to this website and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Join 597 other subscribers

The Information World is changing!

People of One Fire needs your help to evolve with it.

We are now celebrating the 11th year of the People of One Fire. In that time, we have seen a radical change in the way people receive information. The magazine industry has almost died. Printed newspapers are on life support. Ezines, such as POOF, replaced printed books as the primary means to present new knowledge. Now the media is shifting to videos, animated films of ancient towns, Youtube and three dimensional holograph images.

During the past six years, a privately owned business has generously subsidized my research as I virtually traveled along the coast lines and rivers of the Southeast. That will end in December 2017. I desperately need to find a means to keep our research self-supporting with advertising from a broader range of viewers. Creation of animated architectural history films for POOF and a People of One Fire Youtube Channel appears to be the way. To do this I will need to acquire state-of-art software and video hardware, which I can not afford with my very limited income. Several of you know personally that I live a very modest lifestyle. If you can help with this endeavor, it will be greatly appreciated.

Support Us!

Richard Thornton . . . the truth is out there somewhere!

Pin It on Pinterest

Share This

Share this post with your friends!