Uses for Dodder?

MaryRowe Posts: 736 ✭✭✭✭

Has anyone used dodder for food or medicine or any other useful purpose?

I just passed by one of my nettle patches a bit ago and noticed the nettles were covered in what looked like yellow twine, Took a closer look, and realized it must be dodder--I've only seen it in photos until now. Have no idea how it suddenly appeared in the middle of my 30 acres--haven't brought in any plants or soil or anything like that to this area. Maybe birds spread the seed? It grew up really fast--a week or so ago there was no sign of it.

So I've been reading about it, and it appears that traditionally the main medical uses are for ailments of the urinary tract, spleen and liver, and as a purgative. But so far I have not found anything on methods of preparation, or whether it is any good to eat. It is a parasite, and since this dodder is living off my nettles, it must be filling up on good stuff,

The MO Dept of Conservation website recommends getting rid of it ASAP if you see it in your crops or garden by cutting down the plants it has attached itself to before it goes to seed. Apparently it spreads like crazy, and as fast as this patch sprang up, I'm sure it does.

This patch looks like it's about to flower, so I plan on going out tomorrow morning and cutting it down. But I was wondering if it is worth trying to do anything with the dodder after I cut it.