Māori Plant Use

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Plant Use Details 

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Poa cita. Silver tussock.
FAMILY: Gramineae grass family
PREVIOUS NAMES: Poa laevis; Poa caespitosa
MĀORI NAME: wī; pātītī (Beattie 1994)
COMMON NAME: silver tussock
MEDICINAL: In decoction, with tūtuna roots, taken internally for rheumatic aches. 'A handful of each boiled (in just sufficient water to cover them) for an hour; let the water then cool and take a tablespoonful three times a day.' (O'Carroll 1884).
Burns treated with ashes of `tussac-grass' (Bell 1890).
Related pharmacology in Brooker, Cambie and Cooper 1987.
FIBRE: Used to make tags and a neck fringe on a South Island rain cape found in a cave on Mount Benger in Central Otago. Hiroa suggests that the craftsmanship reflects as earlier stage in the evolution of clothing technique. (Te Rangi Hiroa 1926).
Used in the making of taupa, leggings. ''The women (as a rule) not wearing leggings, but occasionally needing protection for the legs when in thorny localities, devised stockings for themselves of the silver tussock (patiti).'' (Beattie 1994)
DOMESTIC: Pātītī spread thickly on ground on which sleeping mats placed (Beattie 1994)