- Mai Fitzgerald
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- circa 48
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her trouble, so he advised her to gather some leaves from the Foxglove or the Fairyfinger as it is often called and to boil these leaves and after boiling them to give the water to the baby to drink telling her that by doing this her own baby would be returned to her. So the mother did as she was told and the poor little baby died because the Foxglove is a poisonous plant.
Around the district where I live there is a huge number of herbs to be got, for instance. Foxglove, Canaban Beg, Greathairy Willow Herb and Pennyleaf. Canaban Beg is to be given as a cure for worms. Foxglove or as it is often called Ladyfinger is a very good cure for the heart.
The place where I live is called Coolboa. It is in the Barony of Decies within Drum. There are fourteen houses in Coolboa, twelve slate and two thatch. The schools and Church are also in Coolboa. There are no rivers or lakes in Coolboa, only a large pond which is called 'Poll an Tairbh', it is called this because it is said that two bulls had a fight near the edge of the pond and one of the bulls fell in and got drowned. There are no people in Coolboa over seventy years. There are no ruins of old houses there. The place is called 'Cúl Bugha' which means 'foxglove'. Because the foxglove plant is growing wild on every ditch and field. The flowers on the plant are like the fingers of a glove.
The following are the weeds that are common in this country, benweed, chickened,dock,thistle, dandelion,corn slurry or year, foxglove,scutch grass,nettle etc... The weeds that give the farmers most trouble are the benweed, year and chickened.
The chickened and dandelion and benweed always grow on good land.
The foxglove always grows on bad land.
The chickened is used as a remedy for sprains and dandelion is a cure for warts. The foxglove is a cure for the heart.
Foxglove is a corruption of ''Folk's Glove'' probably fairy-folk. Its flowers fit like thimbles on the fingers and children love to pull on those handsome white and red blossoms and use the fairies' gloves for themselves.
HerbsThe weeds that grow on our farm are thistles, nettles, dockroots, chickenweed, robin-run-the-hedge, ferns, praiseach weed, wild spearmint, cupog weed, crowfoot and scutch grass.The herbs that grow on our farm are foxglove, dandelion, rib grass nightshade and hemlock.The most harmful weeds are thistles, dockroots, praiseach weed and scutch grass.They spread quickly and make the crops poor. Their seeds remain in the ground for years.The praiseach weed grows in crops of oats and wheat. It also grows in a place where thistles grow. The dockroots grow in all sorts of land.Nettles grow in gardens, by walls and by ditches.The poisonous herbs are foxglove, nightshade and hemlock. If any beasts ate these herbs they would kill them.
The foxglove and nightshade grow in ditches.If a person got a sting of a nettle andif he cut a leaf of a dockroot and
foxglove where I was sitting and you'll find as much treasure as you can carry away. Let me go Patsy darling and go home for a spade".
But Patsy grinned wider than ever. "I'll mark the foxglove before I do", he said, "but I'll not mark it with a red garter! And now, since you've behaved like a gentleman, I'll set you at liberty and thank you kindly".
As soon as he was free the wee lad swept off his hat, "I'd be saving my thanks for a while, Patsy, if I were you", he said with a wink and picking up his stool he disappeared.
Calling at the top of his voice his small sister heard him and came towards him. To make sure of the foxglove he decided to tie Judy to the one mentioned by the leprechaun with the aid of a piece of twine. This done he set off for home for the spade. His feelings can be imagined more easily than described with visions of a bucket-full of gold.
On his return the sight
that met his eyes left him speechless for tied to every foxglove was a small girl shouting "Patsy! Patsy!" at the top of her voice. Unable to speak he looked wildly from foxglove to foxglove - the babies were all exactly alike.
"The leprechaun has tricked me after all", he wailed on regaining his speech. "I've lost my fortune, and whatever can I do with a field full of babies. I'll never be able to tell which is Judy". "Patsy, Patsy", they shouted.
He held his hands to his ears. Suddenly he had an idea and began to laugh. "Why didn't I think of it before", he exclaimed. "Even if I can't tell which is Judy surely she will know which is herself".
So he took out his knife and loosened all the babies by their strings as fast as he could. No sooner done than all the youngster stumbled and rolled abut. Then he stooped and held out his arms,
"Judy, Judy, darling! Come
The flower of the foxglove mixed with hogs lard is a great ointment for all skin diseases, and the juice of the leaves of foxglove is a cure for heart diseaseThe leaves of the alder tree put under the bare feet galled by travelling give reliefThe leaves of the alder tree put in a bed banish the fleasCabbage which is to be used for dinner the following day should be cut at night when the moon is shining as it is then fresh and crisp but during the day it is
the lufurneach is good for calves that have worms.
The moss is good for worts also. You must leave the moss on the worts for a few days and then they would go.
If you had a headache you should get a leaf of cabbage and put it on a coal and then leave it on your forehead and you would get alright.
If a rusty nail went through your foot you should get the foxglove and put it on your foot and it would get alright.
The comfrey is good for boils. If you had boils to scrape the root of the comfrey and put it on a cloth and leave it on the boils and they would go. The comfrey is good for lumps. If you had lumps and leave it on them it would draw they lumps.
The foxglove is good for headache also.
Clover, buacaillin and comfrey grow on good land. Burdock, docken, dandelion and foxglove grow on both good and bad land.
Dandelion means lion's tooth as the leaves of a dandelion are shaped like teeth. If you eat a docken root it is supposed to cure a cough.
Comfrey is used by some people as a food for hens and pigs. It is cut up and boiled and given to them to eat.
Foxglove is sometimes called fairy's finger as the flowers are like fingers. It is supposed to be able to cure cuts.
"Dockens" are harmful because its seeds spread all over the land and covers it with "dockens."
Thistles are harmful because they make the soil poor. Water cress grows in rivers. If a person eats it it will give them an appetite.
A small red berry called a dog berry
also if the leaves are burned it kills fleas and all venomous insects. This is also called in some parts of the district "Job's Tears" as Job is supposed to have cured himself by means of the leaves of the Fleabane.Ragwort or commonly called Staggerwort cures staggers in horses or fowl.Foxglove
Foxglove is a cure for bad chests. The blossoms should be dried in the sun and kept for inhaling, as the blossoms give out a substance comforting to asthmatics and weak chested people.Scabious
Is a cure for skin disease.Yellow Rattle or Cocks Comb
The story of yellow rattle runs that it is so called from the way the seeds rattle in their husks by the passing wind and that this rattle warns the farmer to mow his grass. It is a decorative plant grows about a foot high is hated by the farmer as its growth indicates poor soil and is known to burn the roots of grass or corn. It is known by the name Cocks Comb (by some farmers
The roots of nettles when boiled and the liquid drunk cures the measles. The roots of the primrose boiled is a cure for the jaundice. The stem of the dandelion boiled is a cure for a cough. The juice of the stem of a flagger is a cure for the toothache. The leaves of the foxglove boiled produces a liquid which if drunk is a cure for a weak heart. The leaves of the dock are a cure for a sting of a nettle. Blue is a cure for a sting of a nettle. Blue is a cure for a toothache. Buttermilk whey is a cure for a cold.
There are a lot of herbs and plants growing in the land which I know. Some of these are the "Praiseach Bhuidhe" the costerwan, and the chicken weed. The Praiseach Bhuidhe has a yellow flower. it grows chiefly among the corn crops. The farmers try to get rid of it by pulling it. The costerwan is a sort of weed which grows among grass it has several leaves it is cut sometimes with a knife and given to pigs with porridge. The chickened is a sort of a weed which grows plentifully among potatoes. Garlic in grass is objectionable because it gives a bad flavouring to the cow's milk. Other herbs I know of are the thistle, Iris, and foxglove. The thistle is cut and given to the pigs like the costerwan. The iris is a tall plant it has a yellow flower, it grows to the height
The most harmful weeds that grow in a garden are, nettles, bishops weed, dandelion, dock, thistles, wild parsley, chicken weed, burdock, groundsel, camomile, cuckoo pint, bind weed, foxglove, garlic, watercress, and flagons.
The most harmful of the weeds are, nettles, dandelions, thistles, groundsel, garlic and wild parsley because they spread rapidly. The herbs from which medicine can be obtained are, dandelions which is a cure for warts, garlic for colds, burdock for purifying the blood, camomile is a cure for mumps when it is made into a poultice, mint is for colds.
Nettles are given as food to young turkeys and hens eat dandelions.
Dye is got from flowers and herbs and the herbs which are most poisonous are hemlock, nightshade, and foxglove.
When there was no medicine in the olden days people had to use herbs for cures, and some of these cures are better than those which can be bought nowadays.
Celery is used as a cure for rheumatics.
If you bring the weed called burn-the-house into your house it will go on fire.
Written by - John Blain.
The ''earth nuts'' are used as food and pigs root them up and children enjoy them very much when other nuts cannot be found. The ''braken'' is used for dying wool and ''health'' is used for dying purposes. The ''deadly night shade'' is used as a poison also the foxglove.
Herbs were used extensively in former times and cured all kinds of disease. The Danes handed down several cures and old men from the North went around giving cures and nobody ever failed to be cured.
There are several weeds which grow on the farm, such as dockana, foxglove, the thistle and colefoot. These are very harmful plants and rob the soil of its substance intended for the crop.
In very poor land the colefoot is found. This plant sours the pasture and robs it of its substance.
Digitalis can be procured from foxglove and is a valuable heart stimulant but never given without a doctor's order.
The nettle stings but when cooked it is given for impurities in the blood and to children suffering from measles and also Rheumatism and is also a valuable food for young turkeys and chickens.
The dockana seed is often cooked and given to animals affected with cough.
The bog bean when cooked is given to people suffering from cough.
The chicken weed is a great healing herb when used as a poultice.
Nettles are often eaten by human-beings in the spring when other vegetables are scarce.
Groundsel is found in gardens and the seeds obtained from it are given to cage birds.
The plants which are considered poisonous