Monthly Archives: May 2015

Finally, A book about the Shuswap!


It was over ten years ago that I began writing this column with the goal of producing enough material for a book about the geography of the Shuswap. After I began to combine and add to the material for the book, it became apparent that three volumes would be needed in order to provide comprehensive coverage. When the first draft of the first volume of Everything Shuswap was completed over a year ago, a publishing plan was needed. As traditional publishers are no longer interested in regional publications, a local effort began to secure partners and funding.
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The Secwepemc use of wild plants

    Balsamroot Sunflower above Shuswap Lake at the Lee Creek bluffs
With balsamroot sunflowers now blooming on hillsides throughout the Shuswap it is a good time to reflect on the use of these plants and others by the Secwepemc people for food, medicine, technology and ceremonies. The number of plant species utilized is estimated to be over 135 and these plants probably accounted for well over half of First Nations’ nutritional needs. Anecdotal evidence also points to the exceptional health benefits of diets that included native plants.
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