Our native plants are so much more than something pretty to look at! Stage 1 students recently visited the Hunter Region Botanic Gardens to learn about how our First Nations people used plants for food, tools, weapons and medicine. They learned that the Gymea Lily was used for a fishing spear because it is buoyant, but elders could also drink the juice from the lily. Paperbark was used for roofing as well as for wrapping fish in to cook on the fire.
And lomandra (a native grass) was used for weaving and for making damper – and you can eat the white part at the bottom and it tastes like peas! The First Nations people only took what they needed, not wasting anything, and always thanking the plant when they took from it. The day finished with a picnic with parent helpers and with students learning about how the echidna got its spikes.