Spicebush, Chickweed, Sheep Sorrel, Sweet Bay, Queen Anne’s Lace, and Pennsylvania Bittercress.

Take A Walk On The Wild Side At Abbott’s Mill Nature Center

 

 

Spring is starting to happen all around us. Today was a beautiful day for a walk in the woods and a great chance to learn more about how to identify, harvest, and enjoy many local species of wild edible plants. Jason Beale, Manager of Abbott’s Mill and today’s teacher had an excellent wealth of knowledge and was able to spot many different leaves, roots and berries.

Whenever foraging, never consume anything you are not 100% sure of its identity. There are many “lookalikes” that could kill you so always be safe. Never assume that a plant is safe for consumption just because you observe an animal eat it first. Use caution when it comes to eating aquatic plants due to potential pollution hazards. Never eat from any site that has been treated with herbicide or pesticide.

Wild greens are packed with nutrition and flavor. As a modern chef I enjoy the many  different flavor profiles that can be found in nature: bitter, sweet, sour, piney, grassy, spiced. There are many excellent guide-book’s available for more information. Newcomb’s Flower Guide, Peterson Field Guides, and Botany In a Day just to name a few.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

So many great flavors to be explored!

I need to get back to the Kitchen. Happy hunting!

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6 thoughts on “Spicebush, Chickweed, Sheep Sorrel, Sweet Bay, Queen Anne’s Lace, and Pennsylvania Bittercress.

  1. This kind of stuff excites me. We have a couple wild growing greens we harvest at the temple here in Austin regularly. Not sure of their proper English name…the lady who showed me them called them “bhaji” which literally means “leafy greens” in Sanskrit. The other one she calls “elephant ears”. 🙂

    Up in New England we’d get a ton of wild berries, as well as, fiddleheads.

  2. Tasty chickweed and clover leaves went on our lunchtime sandwiches after Jason’s excellent walk and talk today.
    Thanks for the pictures and important ideas for safe gathering.

    • I am excited about talking to Jason about a potential dinner. It would be great to do a short demo/lecture and them have a few courses. I would be interested in doing one in late spring. It would also be great to do one in summer and fall. We could raise some money for the Delaware Nature Society and Abbott’s Mill.

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