Ku.ut is a versatile plant utilized in various ways by the Tongva.  It has many medicinal uses. To relieve fever and upset stomach, the flowers are brewed into a tea.  This tea can also serve as a dental wash.  When some leaves are added, the tea becomes a wound dressing and an eyewash. If the tea is thickened, it can be used to sweat out fevers and clear chest congestion. 

 Ku.ut roots are boiled and mashed and applied to inflammations.  The crushed leaves are made into a paste and applied to treat skin sores caused by contact with poison oak.  Ku.ut and sobochesh (manzanita) leaves mixed together help to relieve aching feet.

 Ku.ut flowers and blue-grey fruits are also a good food source.  In addition, the Tongva also use the twigs and fruits to make a black dye, and the leaves to produce a light yellow-green dye.  They make clapper sticks, bullroarers, and whistles out of the branches.  

Sambucus mexicana

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  Mario Incayawar, M.D., 2010

Disclaimer: All material provided here is for educational purposes only. Consult your own physician regarding the applicability of any opinions or recommendations with respect to your symptoms or medical condition.