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How Do I Learn What Is Edible When I Am Out Walking?

How Do I Learn What Is Edible When I Am Out Walking?

Postby Adrion » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:27 am

I usually go long walks with my children and i know that berries we find are ok,the kids think it's fantastic eating from the fat of the land,but i'd like to learn more about what is safe to pick and eat when out.I'm not really taking bout a wilderness survival thing,just a general knowledge of berries,plants seeds etc...
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How Do I Learn What Is Edible When I Am Out Walking?

Postby Bevan » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:29 am

There ar regional field guides dedicated to local flora published for most north American regions. There are books just on mushroom hunting and many places have classes on foraging. http://news.discovery.com/adventure/surv... http://www.wildwoodsurvival.com/survival... http://www.twineagles.org/edible-wild-pl...

Edible Wild Field Guides


Foraging Harvester


Texas plants


PNW guide to the wild guides and online resources for foragers

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How Do I Learn What Is Edible When I Am Out Walking?

Postby Tyla » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:30 am

I would suggest that you go to Amazon and enter the words "edible plants field guide" (use the "books" category in search's drop-down menu); make sure that the field guide covers your area.
The Peterson field guides are excellent, and they have a good one for edible plants, but it concentrates on eastern and central North America.
(I don't know where you're located.) If you're on a tight budget, you can always look for a used copy on Amazon, Alibris, or E-Bay.
It can be fun; some of the wild greens such as Watercress are quite delicious (and nutritious), but be sure to wash them very well before consumption -- unless they're growing right in a spring used for drinking water.
Purslane is also quite good -- if a bit peppery-tart/tangy.
My freshman year of college, I was broke and starving (I lost 50 pounds!), and I dug up the Spring Beauty plants (Claytonia virginica) in open lawn and meadow areas around where I lived; their roots are like a small potato, ranging from the size of a large marble to nearly golfball-sized.
Man, I ate a lot of those, and I found them delicious and sustaining.
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How Do I Learn What Is Edible When I Am Out Walking?

Postby baltasar » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:31 am

Google it describe the plant
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How Do I Learn What Is Edible When I Am Out Walking?

Postby Linly » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:34 am

If you have been eating berries with no ill effect continue to do so,but if you see some that you have no knowledge of....leave them alone.
What you should really do is look at a book[fieldguide] of the countryside to know what the plants are.
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How Do I Learn What Is Edible When I Am Out Walking?

Postby Cofahealh » Wed Sep 06, 2017 8:42 am

There isn't much really. If a plant is readily edible and tasty we know it from our tables. There are many plants that can be brewed for teas or coffee, ground as a substituted for flour, thicken stews and included in salad. Dandy lions are a common edible wild plant. But Play-Doh is edible too. Not that there aren't some examples; i.e., wild onion.

I don't want to discourage you. And don't take my word for it. Go to the library and find a book on edible wild plants. Read the descriptions. Here's a typical description picked at random;

American Brooklime: "Gather young leaves and stems from unpolluted water and use like watercress in green salads. It has a bitter flavor and is best mixed with less pungent greens. It can also be used as a potherb."

To paraphrase "American Brooklime won't ruin your salad if used sparingly."


Nannyberry: "Berries can be picked in fall and eaten raw but the seeds must be removed. They are also good for use in pies, fruit sauces and jellies. The fruits must be pulped, stained to remove seeds, and then added to other, usually tart fruits."

To paraphrase "Preparing nannyberry is a laborious way to produce a tasteless paste that won't ruin a rhubarb pie."

Your best bets lie in a few tubers like arrowhead, cat tails, squaw-root and Indian cucumber (a favorite of mine.)

Good luck and bon appetit.

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