Giant ragweed

Howdy, all--

Sometimes you have to go back to square one in thinking about a
problem, you know?  And so:  any of you have any use for giant
ragweed (Ambrosia trifida)?

The stuff is wacked out in our neck o Wisconsin.  Nothing to sneeze
at.  (Sorry.)  We got lots of rain here in Dane County as the small
grains were maturing. The SC Wis. rye field I left two weeks ago
(about 5-6 feet high) was beautifully shaded by it; gave it all a
wonderful Edgar Rice Burroughs appearance, small comfort.  I was
talking to a SE Wis. small grain farmer today who said that in his
part of the world, it's 15 feet tall and they are talking about
forming a Giant Ragweed Support Group. In support of the farmers,
that is; the critters shoreazhell don't need any help.

Has anybody explored uses for the pre-flowering plant?--fiber?  
(Isn't it a forb? no woody tissue?)  biomass?  stomp out the juices 
and ferment it?  If anybody has thoughts, shoot em my way. 

I personally look at the Latin name and remember that old British
S.F. movie, /Night of the Triffids/.  The Ambrosia part I can't say
I understand, though I know quail and ring-necked pheasant like it. 
Hm.  Plant rye, harvest quail.


Yours in the service of the open mind.


Michele Gale-Sinex, communications manager
Center for Integrated Ag Systems 
UW-Madison College of Ag and Life Sciences
Voice: (608) 262-8018   FAX: (608) 265-3020
If you knew what life was worth, you
would look for yours on earth.  --Bob Marley