Poke Root Powder
Botanical Name - Phytolacca americana
Other Names - Poke Sallet, Inkberry, Pokeberry, Pokebush, American Nightshade, Virginia Poke, Scoke, Pocan.
Origin - USA
Flavor Profile - Poke root has an acrid, bitter flavor.
Culinary Usages - Typically tinctured, but may also be prepared as tea.
Cosmetic Usages - Infuse in oil or tincture for use in making salves, balms and creams.
American Poke Root (syn. Phytolacca decandra, P. americana L.), is a perennial shrub found in eastern North America and the Gulf Coast, although smaller populations also occur in the Midwest. The herb is known as chui xu shang lu in China and elsewhere by a long list of common names that includes Poke Sallet, Inkberry, Pokeberry, Pokebush, American Nightshade, Virginia Poke, Scoke and Pocan. That plant is characterized by deep purple stems that resemble rhubarb and dark blue-black berries. Like rhubarb, the leaf is toxic but the root is not.
Poke root is typically tinctured or used to make infused oils, salves and creams.
Precautions - Do not use during pregnancy. Use in moderation – high doses may cause nausea, vomiting and respiratory distress.
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