Ever wanted to learn how to hunt deer but have no experience and really don't know where to look? Here's everything you need to know to get started.
The wild pawpaw. Asimina triloba. Largest North American fruit. One with as many aliases as Billy the Kid — Bandango, Indiana Banana, Poor Man’s Banana, or simply Paw Paw.
An indescribable cross between banana, mango, pineapple, and whatever fruitarian delicacy you might not be able to imagine. The thing forager dreams are made of. My nemesis.
Pine needles purportedly have three to five times more vitamin C than an orange, depending on what source you read.
Regardless of the exact vitamin C content, we know that pine needle tea has enough to treat scurvy.
The term "chickweed" most notably describes Common Chickweed (Stellaria media), although there are several other chickweeds, all in the genus Stellaria.
Common Chickweed is a cool weather plant native to Europe that has widely naturalized in the United States and throughout the world. It’s often found in lawns and other areas of shady, moist soil.
Depending on climate, chickweed normally appears during the cooler temperatures of fall and dies back in the late spring or early summer heat. It thrives between 53° and 68°F.
Ready for a new foraging cookbook? Acorns & Cattails: A Modern Foraging Cookbook of Forest, Farm & Field is a real wild foodie's treasure. I've been thumbing through it for a week or so and it's got me champing at the bit to try some new recipes. Rob Connoley, the author, is a James Beard semi-finalist for Best Chef-Southwest--his book was born of a deep passion for making good food along with a lot of sweat and blood.
Learning about edible wild plants has allowed me to see the natural world from different, unique perspective. I love meeting new plants and I've always held a deep appreciation for their beauty, but the context of "usefulness" makes them so much more fascinating. It's exciting for me to discover that a plant I've known for years--Devil's walkingstick for instance--happens to be edible. It's like getting a more intimate glimpse of an old friend.
Foraging edible wildflowers is probably one of the more fun aspects of eating wild food and it's a great introduction, especially for kids. Flowers are a lot easier to see than wild greens so foraging them can be a simpler task. Some are sweet, some spicy, and some almost tasteless, but wild edible flowers are perfect for adding color to salads and other foods.
Warm March wind, flowering redbuds, and the greening of the lawn: all suggestions of spring. Early spring is when some of the most prolific, most accessible wild edibles make their first appearances of the year. It's when edible plants are at their tenderest and tastiest. And your own backyard might just be the most convenient and most productive place you'll find to forage this time of year. Here are a few of the more common edible weeds that are likely lurking in your yard and garden.