Loved this article, but want to add that I've been eating both bitter dock and curly-leaf dock as cooked greens all my life, and in every country I've ever visited (33 to date). At home in Canada I freeze the cooked dock in one-litre empty yogourt containers and eat it all winter long..
I grew up on a farm in southern (hilly) Indiana, and my grandmothers would sometimes take me along to hunt greens for our supper. We picked wild poke, dock, mustard and dandelion greens, usually mixing them. They were delicious, and the time outdoors with my grandmas was priceless. One of my ancestral surnames is "Brown," by the way. :-) I grew a HUGE poke plant in my back pation "yard" this year. It turned into a fabulously tropical-looking "tree." See attached...
Great poke plant you have there. One of my first mountain climbing memories is gathering poke with Aunt Bett. There's an article about it around here somewhere on DG.
But I'm looking at your picture and seeing those poke berries!!! They are just ready to use to paint pictures on rocks and walls...which I did every chance I got. I know how toxic poke is, I was told about it early on, but I painted every rock around with those berries!
I love Bloomington, by the way, my son has a condo there on Lake Monroe. It's rented out right now, and I haven't been there in a couple of years, but still enjoy it when I can.
My maiden name is Webb, and I can't remember that any of my husband's family lived in Indiana, but maybe so. It's a small world.
Thanks for writing, I love the photo of your 'tropical' plant. They do grow quite large!