Thursday, October 7, 2010

Cooking Andean Pampas Grass

Andean pampas grass, (Cortaderia jubata), is a native of South America. In California, it was introduced and is still grown as an ornamental plant, however, it is highly invasive, especially on fragile coastal dunes.

Pampas grass was recently harvested to be made into a part of Book Bombs' upcoming zine (more information on that to come). The image above was a tussock that grew alongside railroad tracks in Richmond, California. It has razor sharp leaves, and we recommend gloves for any harvesting that our readers might attempt.

The light, fluffy blond seed-hair was collected and saved for future projects - see below:

The stalks and leaves were cut down and soaked overnight . . .

. . .and then cooked in washing soda prior to beating. Interestingly, pampas grass turns a rusty orange when cooked.

More to come on the processing this into paper. Stay tuned...

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