Yucca soap

Discussion in 'Primitive Tools' started by Bosapah, Jul 11, 2014.

  1. Bosapah

    Bosapah Scout

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    I did a search and nothing came up as far as a demonstration. So here we go. I often wash my hands in this manner at my farm.

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    Two green leaves. The brown ones are dry and dying. More on them in another post. The green ones are full of moisture and contain the saponins.

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    Using the back of your knife, a rock or a sharp stick, scrape the flesh from the leaf. There is a clear papery coating over the flesh. I have heard of western desert native Americans using this strata from an agave as paper. The paper layer on the yucca is narrow and frustrating to work with as paper but I am going by to post about it in the near future. Save all of the scraping.

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    Scrape both sides of the leaves. Notice the fibers under the flesh.



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  2. Bosapah

    Bosapah Scout

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    [​IMG]

    Stack the leaves together and put the scraping on top. You can already feel the sticky soapy liquid before the water is added. Also, I cut off the sharp point of the leaf and the hard base where it joins the plant' s trunk. They are hard and sharp. I have only added water. No agitation has occurred at this point and the soapy bubbles are already visible.

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    Agitate the leave as you would when washing your hands with a bar of soap. The liquid will start to foam up.

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    The soap from the yucca is pretty powerful. It will strip the oils from your skin and dry it out. I have used it in the shower and on my hair. It really dries you out. Needed lots of conditioner after. But as a field soap to wash the deer blood or hog filth off of your hands and arms it is awesome.

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  3. Youcantreadinthedark

    Youcantreadinthedark Amphibian. Supporter Bushclass I

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    thank you sir. now to move to somewhere with yucca.
     
  4. Scratch4x4

    Scratch4x4 Supporter Supporter

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    Very nice write up. Thanks for posting.
     
  5. Bosapah

    Bosapah Scout

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    I know how you feel. Every time I see a northerner or a southerner post a split wood fire video or a wood carving video I think, "where is all of this soft straight grained wood coming from" HaHa. Ever tried to carve or split bois d'arc/osage or pecan.
     
    Last edited: Jul 11, 2014
  6. CheapskateLurch

    CheapskateLurch Tracker

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    Very nice instructional. I had heard of processing soap from the root, but this is a good way to make immediate use of the situation.
     
  7. lesleypen

    lesleypen Tinder Gatherer

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    My husband uses the root to make a soap, he just kinda pulverizes into a mush and then mixes it with lavender and other wild flowers(not sure what else) it is my favorite soap and one young root will produce a lot of soap. Not sure if he knows you can use the leaves too, I'll have to show him this when he gets back from the mountains, looks much quicker for field use. I like, thanks for the info.
     
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  8. Blackhawk45hunter

    Blackhawk45hunter Pronounced sim-bee-duh Hobbyist Supporter Bushclass II

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    I was just wondering about how this was done!
    Thanks for the awesome post.


    I wonder if this would be a good soap to wash with when you have poison ivy?
    It could help to dry it up.


    Hmmmmm........
     
  9. Bosapah

    Bosapah Scout

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    Good question. I'll have to try that. My partner in crime, Who is also a forum member, has crushed and rubbed broad leaf plantain leaves on poison ivy rashes before and it worked amazingly well. It cleared in two days and stopped the itching. Saw it with my own eyes.
     
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  10. sidmand

    sidmand Bacon is food duct tape Supporter

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    I would gladly trade you many/many trunks of basswood and poplar for two or 3 trunks of osage :). Osage grows around here in Alabama, but it's not a common tree. However, it is HIGHLY prized by those of us who fancy making our own bows, I would love to have a patch of it close to me.
     
  11. coloradospyderco

    coloradospyderco Tracker

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    Today I made a bit of soap out of yucca root mixed with some water. It worked very well but a few minutes later I felt nauseated and dizzy. I have very bad allergies and I was wondering, is yucca a common allergy? It may have been something else. Also, I really enjoyed this thread! Thank you!
     
  12. TRASHMAN

    TRASHMAN BushTrash Supporter Bushclass I

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  13. aktrekker

    aktrekker Guide

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    Some people do have a sensitivity to the saponins in yucca and other plants. Some people can eat the flowers raw. Some have to cook them. Some can't eat them at all. If you check side effects at the webmd link above you will see they include nausea.
    If you notice, many of the uses listed for yucca involve extracts, not the actual plant. This would avoid the problems.
     
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  14. DavidJAFO

    DavidJAFO Guide

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    hello,
    I found this of interest..
    Yucca, also known as soap tree, is an edible plant with tuberous roots which are rife with natural saponins, the soap-making (or saponifying) ingredient which causes lather as well as the carbonated soda ingredient that causes root beer or sarsaparilla to froth. The root also has emollient properties which have a soothing and moisturizing effect, making yucca root soap ideal for people with sensitive skin, or who have allergies to chemical lye or glycerine soaps. In addition, yucca soap bars can be used interchangeably as human and pet shampoo.
    Regards
    David
     
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  15. backwoodstrails

    backwoodstrails anatidaephobic Supporter Bushcraft Friend

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    Taught this to my Niece a few years back. We just separate the leaf fibers as we would for making cordage and then add water and rub together - really lathers up.
    The Yucca (species) stalks here in my area do not work well for friction fire, much too soft. I have heard it being far better for friction fire in other parts of the country.

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  16. jcl-MD

    jcl-MD The Enigma Supporter Bushclass I

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    After helping my farther in law repair his leaking well I gave the Yucca another GO...I never got a good showing with the yucca soap in the past..but this time it worked very well.

    [​IMG][/url]Yucca Soap by jclservices, on Flickr[/IMG]

    I just ripped the yucca leaf into strips and balled it up and used the leaf as a scrubber to remove the dirt..this time is a GO.

    Thanks
     
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  17. Bosapah

    Bosapah Scout

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    Glad to see your success.
     
  18. Usingmyrights

    Usingmyrights Supporter Supporter

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    I wonder if it'll work with Spanish bayonet. Hmmm... my neighbors have some and they left outta town this morning. ....
     
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  19. gila_dog

    gila_dog Supporter Supporter

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    Thanks for the info. I'm going to try making soap that way. Where I live is soaptree yucca heaven. I make walking sticks out of the dried out flower stalks.

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    By the way, yucca is the New Mexico state flower.

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  20. Bosapah

    Bosapah Scout

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    That's beautiful country. The yucca where I live don't get nearly that big. Wish they did. Saw a guy the other day make a fire saw fire from one of those big yuccas. Like to try that sometime. Been eyeing a neighbor's agave stalk for a few months might go on a night time black opp raid and give it a go with the fire saw method. Love the pack goat.
     
    Last edited: Aug 3, 2014
  21. Medicine maker

    Medicine maker Guide

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    Just giving this a good ol bump.
     
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  22. OrienM

    OrienM Guide

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    Good one! All the yucca varieties that I've played with were 'soapy' like this (I do believe that Schott's Yucca in the pics.). My usual method is to pound up a whole leaf, and use it like a pre-soaped fiber scrubber.
     
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  23. Medicine maker

    Medicine maker Guide

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    This needs the most of bumps. This and charcoal have become my go to methods for cleaning. No scents or dyes. Weightless. Anyone can take a leaf or two and have it last, till ya get to the camp and put it in a little water and your good.

    Theres also a long process yucca soap you can make but this method is so so much faster.
     

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