In Bosnia and Herzegovina, the picking of Iva grass on Ozren mountain is an important thing. On September 11th each year, the anniversary of the beheading of St John the Baptist, inhabitants of the villages around Ozren mountain go to Gostilij to pick Iva grass, according to UNESCO.
After hiking up the hills, villagers of all social, gender and age groups pick Iva grass, both individually and in groups. Iva must be picked carefully and pickers need to find it among the higher grass; the process therefore usually takes a few hours.
When the picking is done, they get together wearing Ozren folk costumes, “to play, dance and sing traditional music”
“Picking of Iva herb on Mount Ozren” is the third inscription from Bosnia and Herzegovina, which has been registered on the Representative List of the Intangible Heritage of Humanity. Earlier, Zmijanje Embroidery and Konjic Woodcarving have also been enlisted.
The population of the villages on Mount Ozren near Doboj preserved for much longer, in comparison with its neighbors, a considerable number of traditional elements in the original form, among them some forms of folk medicine, and the most famous form is this element of intangible heritage, the picking of Iva herb, Federal News Agency reports.
Iva herb (lat. Teucrium montanum) is a plant with healing properties that grows in mountainous areas around the world.