Food, medicine, or poison?: Understanding roles of apazote (Dysphania ambrosioides) in communities across Guatemala

March 22 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm

Presented by: Tabitha Faber is a 3rd year PhD student in Botany, working with Drs. Ken Keefover-Ring and Claudia Calderon. Her work focuses on the connections between plants and people, especially as related to plants that we eat — foods, medicines, and when they may turn toxic. Tabitha enjoys participating in her own research by learning new recipes that include the plants she studies and sharing them with friends and loved ones (after verifying the dishes are safe to eat!).

About the presentation: How is something defined as “edible”? Something that is “not toxic”? Something that is flavorful or nutritious? What is the difference between something that is “edible” and something that is “safe to consume”? For plants like apazote, an unassuming herb native to Latin America, the question “is it edible?” may be more complicated than it first appears. This talk will delve into the many factors that could be affecting how “safe” it is to consume apazote, how these factors may be changing in our changing world, and how people from various communities in Guatemala have been engaging with these factors as they choose whether or not to consume the plant.


Date: March 22
Time:12:00 pm – 1:00 pm
Event Category:Lunchtime Lecture Series


Room 206 Ingraham Hall
1155 Observatory Drive
Madison, 53706 United States
Phone:(608) 262-2811


Latin American, Caribbean, and Iberian Studies Program
Phone:(608) 262-2811