The Ju/’hoansi San had another good year harvesting, curing and selling devil’s claw tubers from the surrounding Kalahari Desert. About 800 residents of the Nyae Nyae Conservancy and their closely-related neighbors to the west, the !Kung of the N#a Jaqna Conservancy, harvested about 32 tons of the desert plant roots this year, earning them nearly […]

A desert plant that grows in southern Africa with the intriguing popular name “devil’s claw” is being increasingly harvested by the Ju/’hoansi for sale on the international market. A news story in a Namibian newspaper last week provided an update on the increasing economic importance of the harvesting business. A report in this website in […]

Recent research on medicinal plant preparations and their uses by a Yanadi community in southeastern India provides insights into their traditions and the efforts to preserve them. Nataru Savithramma and four colleagues published an article a few months ago that describes the medicinal plants used by Yanadi healers in Chandragiri and Gopolapuram, villages in the […]

The Semai effectively utilize products from their nearby forests that give them health and economic benefits, and in the process they are able to preserve their traditional way of life. A journal article about a research project in Malaysia, published in 2012, analyzes an important aspect of their traditional relationships with the forests: the uses […]

Although medicine and peacefulness are quite separate issues for most of the world, in some small-scale societies, such as the Paliyan, traditional healers and botanical preparations still help maintain physical, cultural, and social health. A detailed article describing the healing plants used in some Paliyan villages of Tamil Nadu, in southern India, provides some interesting […]