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Native American Coneflower Mythology

Native American Legends About Coneflowers

The purple coneflower, also known by its Latin name Echinacea, is a native wildflower of North America known to many different American Indian tribes. In Western tribes like the Ute, coneflowers are associated with elk and called by the name "elk root," due to the belief that wounded elk seek them out as medicine. Coneflower roots were used as traditional healing herbs by many tribes, especially in the Great Plains and Midwest, to treat many types of swelling, burns, and pain. Coneflower has also been chewed ritually during sweatlodge ceremonies and the Sundance. The coneflower is considered one of the sacred Life Medicines of the Navajo tribe.

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Recommended Books of Coneflower Stories from Native American Myth and Legend

Echinacea Exalted!: The Botany, Culture, History and Medicinal Uses of the Purple Coneflowers:
    Book about the meaning of the coneflower through history, beginning with Native American folklore.
Native American Medicinal Plants:
    Comprehensive book on the names and traditional uses of herbs throughout Native North America.
Native Plant Stories:
    Excellent collection of Native American stories about plants and their meanings, by Abenaki storyteller Joseph Bruchac.



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