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Passing on wild rice techniques


September 17, 2021

Taylor Warnes

Here are some of the wild ricing steps taught during the camp. Harvest: By using a push pole and knockers, harvesters poled through rice beds, being careful to not rip out the rice plants or knock stems to the point of breaking them. Drying: Rice from the lake is laid out on tarps in the sun to dry the rice and pick out any stems or other debris.

Students from Fond du Lac Tribal and Community College and others got an in-depth look at wild rice and how to harvest it Saturday at the annual Manoomin demonstration camp at Leeman Lake.

The lessons learned included "how to sustainably harvest, or knock, the rice without breaking the stems to drying, parching, and winnowing the rice to get the final product that ends up at our dining room table," said Courtney Kowalczak, director of the Environmental Institute at the college. "Each step is a process that is time-consuming but ensures that we are appreciating the gift of the rice and takin...

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