Erucastrum arabicum (?)1
plant is a creeper on the ground with green-grey rosette of leaves and
yellow flowers (see picture below).
preparation methods and palatability
Leaves and stalk are edible. The plant
is considered a typical famine food and is eaten by everybody. Women and
children do the collection. It usually grows after the first 'meher' rains
and can be harvested in August to feed before the crop harvest. The root
has to be removed and the stalk together with the leaves are chopped and
boiled in salty water for about one hour. If available, spices and pepper
may be added to the soupy meal. The species has side effects such as drowsiness
and the drying of the skin, i.e. the loss of natural oils in the body.
Has been found
in the highlands.
Propagates by ...
Birhan, Jana Mora, North Gonder
The plant's name is also used for
an insult; 'nechelochari' (the one who has to dig with his bare hands 'nechelo',
that means he is so poor he neither can afford to own nor to rent an ox.
He is a destitute).
following description has been made by Anna Barnett, Ethiopian Venture
'Nechelo' around Mekane Birhan, Jana
Mora, North Gonder