The Many Uses of The Ultimate Survival Flower

in this video i'm going to harvest a mammoth 
sunflower that grew with a stalk about eight   feet tall when they're that big there's lots of 
material in the stock i'll harvest the center of   the stock make flour explain the other uses of it 
make char stock for fire starting and show you how   to make a fantastic sunflower stock and oat flour 
cookie that's healthy for you gluten-free probably   the healthiest cookie you'll ever eat i'll also 
try and bake bread with it i wasn't able to find   anyone who has ever processed the sunflower in 
this way for these specific purposes so this will   be a first that we will have to see together how 
well it works let's get into it please consider   subscribing to our newsletter by clicking on the 
link in the description and comment section below   if you enjoyed this video please subscribe and 
click the like button to help the channel grow   if you could grow just one plant as a prepper 
it should without a doubt be sunflowers   they grow fast and strong they've been used to 
pull radiological waste out of the environment   after chernobyl and fukushima the large stalks 
can be used to build structures like tepees   the stalks are very fibrous so you can use them as 
kindling when dried you can pound the strands of   fibers out and make paper or even rope sunflower 
seeds and flour are gluten free it's also grain   free nut free paleo and keto friendly making it an 
excellent choice for almost any dietary lifestyle   sunflower seeds are rich in healthy fats 
vitamins and minerals just a quarter cup   of them has 14 grams of fat 5.5 grams of protein 
6.5 grams carbs not only are the easy to grow and   beautiful additions to your landscape but every 
single bit of the plant is also usable and edible   from the petals to the seeds the stock 
and even down to the root i'll repeat that   every bit of the plant is edible harvesting 
of the dozen or so mammoth sunflower seeds   that i planted i was able to grow just one 
massive sunflower i let the birds eat the   seeds i tend to do that if i'm not going to 
process the seeds give them a little easy food   every bit of the sunflower is edible the seeds 
roots stalk leaves and petals every bit of it   for this sunflower i am mainly interested 
in stock inside the flower stalk just like   artichokes or any other large flower is a fibrous 
material that is mainly fiber super absorptive   and with multiple uses you can use the dried stock 
center for insulation in structures or clothes   molding containers for putting around plant roots 
to absorb water for starting a fire or as i will   do here for making sunflower flower and char stock 
for lighting fires to harvest it i simply sawed it   down cut it into two foot pieces i could work with 
then i split it and used a spoon to remove the   spongy center my eight foot or so stalk yielded 
a large bowl full of sunflower stock center the   easiest way i found to extract the pith was with 
a simple spoon but anything you could scrape the   stock against would work for this process don't 
waste the outer stock though these i just cut   down into smaller pieces and i'll let them dry out 
completely they're fibrous and burn hot and fast   they make some of the best kindling you'll ever 
find it's the center part of primarily pith and a   little xylem that we will use to make our products 
but i will emphasize again that the entire   plant is completely edible the whole purpose of 
this part of the plant is to transport water and   nutrients up to plant stock the outer shell 
provides the rigidity to keep the plant erect   as such it's great at absorbing liquids drying it 
out i dried mine on the lowest setting of my oven   175 degrees after giving it a quick rinse i simply 
spread it on parchment paper lined cookie sheet   and put it in the oven if you take it out too 
early or dry too slow the moisture will cause some   of it to oxidize and brown a little like a banana 
it's all still perfectly edible and i believe this   deepens the sunflower flavors which are minimal in 
the pith to begin with when it's completely dry it   will take on a styrofoam texture and feel you can 
use sunflower pith as a natural insulation if you   keep it dry i placed mine in the oven and dried 
it completely for almost a full day at 175 degrees   since i was making flour out of it i wanted it to 
be bone dry but you can use it after just general   dehydration and when it takes on a consistency of 
styrofoam milling to flour once it is completely   dry it is easy to grind down to flour you could 
probably break it apart roughly with just your   hands you could definitely mill it down by rubbing 
it between two rocks or in a mortar and pestle   i use my vitamix blender to easily mill 
it down to almost a pastry flour lightness   of all the grains i've ever milled down in this 
manner this sunflower pith was clearly the easiest   it became a fine dusty powder in a very short 
time i was impressed by the overall yield it was   more than i expected char stock and activated 
carbon because this dried pith was so fibrous   i had a hunch it would make good char cloth or 
in this case char stock you may have heard of   charcloth the production of char cloth occurs 
when organic cellulose-based fibers undergo   pyrolysis char cloth is a form of biomass termed 
biochar char cloth is a result of incomplete   combustion as oxygen is a limiting region in the 
reaction due to the limited oxygen let into the   tin during the production process it is typically 
made from cut up pieces of all cotton t-shirts   what char cloth or stock means to us is that it 
will easily take a spark burn slow and hot and   allow you to add other materials to get a raging 
fire if you have ever just used the flint and   steel method you know that the drier the tinder 
the better to make charts stock i used a metal   tin that i poked a hole in the top of you want 
to vent off the gases of the material inside   and the hole will let you know when the 
char cloth or in this case stock is done   when the smoke is stopped and the flammable 
gases are no longer producing the flame on   top your char cloth is done i put the container 
in my gas fireplace and hit it with a low flame   after a while it was smoking really well there was 
even a small wick like flame coming through the   hole i finished it with a strong flame until all 
the smoke and flames out the hole had completely   stopped when you remove the contents you have 
to be very careful it's extremely fragile   it's a microscopic matrix of carbon atoms that 
will take and cuddle whatever spark you give it   store it in its own ziploc baggie and put that 
in a hard container or the tin you just used   it took the spark with relative ease but it 
was harder to tell that it was lit than it is   when using char cloth i think that char kloss 
flatness and the woven matrix are better for   this purpose but the char stock will work keep 
it dry and moisture free and you'll be able to   start a fire in all kinds of conditions it's 
also excellent activated charcoal in this state   as such it is a highly porous substance that 
attracts and holds organic chemicals inside it   it will attract and absorb volatile organic 
compounds like benzene tolein xylene chlorine and   some oils absorb is when two materials chemically 
combine adsorb is when one material sticks to the   surface of another in this case volatile organic 
compounds stick to the surface of the char   stock activated charcoal so they adsorb you can 
use the sunflower stock activated charcoal as a   critical layer in your water filtration system 
with both the char stock fire starting and the   water filtration capabilities this is a great 
addition to your prepping supplies as one of the   lightest substances eight times lighter than cork 
you can tuck away quite a bit in your prepping   supplies and not feel the weight of it using the 
sunflower flour for cookies and bread there is   almost nothing written at all about using the 
pith as a flower for baking so i'm completely   in new territory here i will also let you know as 
you will see here i'm not much of a baker still   the cookies i made came out quite tasty and held 
their form well enough i found that the sunflower   flour didn't really take to yeast there aren't 
enough starches and sugars in there for yeast   to really have a go at it but i tried to make 
a loaf of basic bread with it as well for this   first baking experiment i wanted to try sunflower 
and oat cookies to stay as true to the original   ingredients as possible my sunflower easily 
yielded about four cups or more of superfine flour   so i decided to use three quarters cup of it to 
make a simple sunflower butter cookie i will tell   you now i'm not a baker but i was surprised at 
how good these were here's the recipe you will   need 3 4 cup sunflower pith flour half cup 1 stick 
unsalted butter softened 1 4 cup sugar half cup   sunflower seed butter 1 ounce oil of your choice 
coconut or vegetable half teaspoon kosher salt   2 3 cup ground milled steel cut oats ground finer 
or flaked oats 1 egg half cup packed brown sugar   1 teaspoon baking soda in a large 
bowl cream together butter brown sugar   white sugar and sun butter until 
smooth beat in egg until well blended combine the flour baking soda salt and oatmeal stir into the creamed mixture here i should 
have refrigerated my mix for a few hours so   it would keep its form better i didn't so all 
my cookies melted together into a sheet cookie   that's fine though cooking is always 
an experiment for me so i just cut them   like i would sheet cookies cook in 
a 350 degree oven for 30 minutes transfer to a cool surface to let them cool and 
harden here you see because i didn't refrigerate   the mix they didn't hold their form when 
cooking and i ended up with some sheet cookie   i told you i'm not much of a baker that's fine 
i cut them as is and they still were quite good   they were delicious for the bread i wanted a 
comparison to a regular loaf of white bread so   i pulled out my bread machine and used the most 
basic recipe i could find i didn't have enough   flour left over so i ended up using half sunflower 
pith flour and half regular bleach flour i used   the dough setting to give it more time to rise 
then i set it for a 58 minute loaf the end result   was an edible somewhat nutty loaf but it was very 
dense if it's what you had to survive on and you   were stretching your supply of flour or wheat 
berries as far as you could then yes this might   be a way to do it i think the only rise i was able 
to achieve was owed to the flower that i used i   don't think the pith flower has anything the yeast 
can really eat in there if sunflower pith flour   was all you had you might try to make it like an 
irish soda bread that would rise without the use   of yeast if you want these recipes they will 
be at cityprepping.com forward slash sunflower a brief history sunflowers or helianthus is 
a genus of about 70 species of annual and   perennial plants in the daisy family they 
range from jerusalem artichokes cultivated   for their roots to mammoth sunflowers prized for 
their seeds and beauty they are native to north   america and central america it grows throughout 
the summer and into fall domestic sunflower   seeds have been found in mexico dating to 2100 
bce indigenous american people grew sunflowers   as a crop from mexico to southern canada as 
early as 5 000 years ago the seeds were eaten   and the stock would often be used as building 
material the first crop seeds were brought to   europe by explorers in the 16th century they 
were first cultivated as a food source with early   americans using the seeds to crush into flour 
for bread sunflowers weren't just used for food   sunflowers were extremely popular around europe 
russia and ukraine in the 1700s by the early 19th   century russian farmers had grown over 2 million 
acres of sunflowers when the russians cultivated   them to extract the oil for cooking new cultifers 
came back to the americas there you have it   one plant you absolutely need in 
your prepper garden is the sunflower   i've only shown you a couple of uses for it here 
utilizing just one part that is often discarded   whether it's aerating your mulch pit feeding 
your chickens filtering your drinking water   removing radiation from the environment used as 
a construction material kindling harvested for   seeds pressed into oil or used to build a raft the 
list of options for this easily grown food source   are perhaps without limit if you could take with 
you or have with you just one plant make sure it's   the noble sunflower i've shown you just a few 
uses of one part of it do you know of another   leave a comment and let us know how you use your 
sunflower plant is there another plant i should   grow and show you how to use if you want to see a 
printed version of this video along with recipes   and procedures i outlined visit cityprepping.com 
forward slash sunflower if you have an idea   that you would like to see in a future video 
please leave a comment there and let me know

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