Foraging for Food

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karstopography
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Foraging for Food

#1

Post: # 26047Unread post karstopography
Mon Jul 20, 2020 6:27 am

Anyone like to forage for tasty wild edibles?

Making a blackberry mead with foraged dewberries. I pick about 15-20 cups most years and use them for cobler mostly. I could and should pick more, They mostly ripen in April and May here.

Another favorite foraged food is chanterelle mushroom. These pop up after a big summer rain. Easy to ID and delicious sauteed in butter and as a topping for steak.

Prickly pears are growing nicely here and come fall I will be gathering some for prickly pear syrup and to make a mead.

There are a ton of wild edibles out there. Tomorrow, I'm on the hunt for buffalo gourd seeds. I'm in buffalo gourd country.

Palmetto fruit, Turk's cap, dandelions, wild onions, cattails, so many. Regional specialties like Ramps and morels, sadly, I'm outside those zones.

What's your favorite foraged food?
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worth1
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Re: Foraging for Food

#2

Post: # 26050Unread post worth1
Mon Jul 20, 2020 6:54 am

Pecans
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Re: Foraging for Food

#3

Post: # 26051Unread post rxkeith
Mon Jul 20, 2020 6:59 am

wild blue berries are about to turn ripe.
thimble berries are just starting in sunny spots.
my son made over $400.00 last year picking and selling thimble berries
to a local restaurant.
sugar plums/service berries, choke cherries, black berries, and wild
raspberries will be ripening soon also.
wild apples are all over the place. they will be ready soon.
mushrooms abound, but i am not confident identifying them other than
morels, hens and chicks or puff balls. there are several mushrooms
that grow here that can kill you.

lambs quarter, what we call a weed is coming up in the garden. its in
the spinach family. i cook some of that now and then until the garden
greens start producing.

if you are hungry, just go outside. food is everywhere.


keith
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Sue_CT
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Re: Foraging for Food

#4

Post: # 26064Unread post Sue_CT
Mon Jul 20, 2020 9:04 am

Ramps. But I know longer forage them because they are endangered. I transplanted some into my yard a few years ago and they still come up every year. Maybe in 10 years I will have enough to start using a few, lol. They are very slow to regenerate. They say it takes 7 years to replace what is harvested.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#5

Post: # 26071Unread post Gardadore
Mon Jul 20, 2020 12:03 pm

I was given some ramps last year in the spring. Having never seen them before, instead of eating them I planted them. The person who gave them to me was astonished at my lack of knowledge! But they came up this spring so I investigated how to prepare them. One article suggested cutting them just at the bulb top so they could grow back. This would save the plant. I did that and will see if they sprout next spring. If so then I will have a permanent Bed of them.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#6

Post: # 26113Unread post worth1
Mon Jul 20, 2020 6:08 pm

Poke greens.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#7

Post: # 26125Unread post Bower
Mon Jul 20, 2020 8:30 pm

Chanterelles are about two weeks early this year! We had our first taste on Sunday, which would normally be around the first of august.
Picked a big handful of wild strawberries after dinner tonight. We've been having them in salads. They are everywhere around the garden, small to medium sized, lovely! :)
We do hunt for other mushrooms as well, but that will be later, chanterelles are the early ones.
Blueberries and partridgeberries, our families lived on these and a few less common berries, before supermarkets were invented.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#8

Post: # 26153Unread post worth1
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:03 am

Nut grass nut sedge bulbs or whatever they are called.
I haven't eaten one but they say you can.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#9

Post: # 26154Unread post worth1
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:04 am

Mesquite beans.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#10

Post: # 26155Unread post worth1
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:05 am

Acorns.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#11

Post: # 26156Unread post karstopography
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:10 am

One that I want to try is salcornia, glasswort, sea bean, different names for the same basic plant. It grows out in the salt marsh here and really coast to coast up to Alaska or Labrador along salty margins. I see it pretty often, but have yet to gather any. Sargassum is one I have gathered and tasted, it is actually pretty tasty, sort of peppery and spicy.

Has anyone tried the glasswort?
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Re: Foraging for Food

#12

Post: # 26159Unread post Lonejack
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:47 am

Various wild mushrooms mostly...Morels, Chanterelles, Oyster, Lobster, Hen of the woods, Lion's Mane, Reishi. Be sure to check a field guide or 2 when foraging wild mushrooms and if in doubt toss it out. A spore test is also very helpful with positive identification.

I know of couple wild asparagus spots but I haven't gone to them for a few years because I can't keep up with my own asparagus beds.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#13

Post: # 26166Unread post worth1
Tue Jul 21, 2020 9:23 am

I have eaten docks and sorrels.
A spring weed that grows just about everywhere.
Goes great in salads and even sandwichs.
Kin to the buckwheat plant.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#14

Post: # 26167Unread post worth1
Tue Jul 21, 2020 9:34 am

Sorry I keep coming up with more plants.
The red yucca you see in many landscapes.
It isn't a yucca it is really an agave.
The flowers are very tasty.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#15

Post: # 26170Unread post Nan6b
Tue Jul 21, 2020 9:49 am

Wild wheat berries. Lamb's quarters. I also forage a lot on my property with stuff I brought in, like the albino everbearing alpine strawberries. I can't say I cultivate them as they have moved throughout my front & back yard as they please. Don't often have enough cattails on hand in the bog to forage them. Staghorn sumac red berry clusters make a nice citrus-y tea. Bittercress, garlic mustard, wild chives. My fave would be the strawberries.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#16

Post: # 26235Unread post Bower
Tue Jul 21, 2020 5:15 pm

Forgot to mention dandelion greens. A favorite in my Dad's family and locally.
I put dandelion on a sandwich not long ago, when I had a lapse in my production of salad greens. Went outdoors to look for some anything, that's what I found. ;) It was good.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#17

Post: # 26251Unread post Shule
Tue Jul 21, 2020 7:17 pm

I don't get out much, but when I used to go camping every year, I'd forage for bilberries (which we called huckleberries), wild strawberries, mint, and when rare occasion would permit, raspberries and blackberries (but usually I only got wild blackberries when I went to visit family in Washington or Canada; they do exist in Idaho, apparently even in my home county, but are much, much, much fewer and farther between).

Sometimes I forage among the edible weeds in my yard, but I honestly haven't eaten very much from them. I plan to try growing some of them on purpose. Maybe I'll domesticate some Malva neglecta.

I've been wanting to eat some shepherds purse, and save seeds both to grow and use as a spice.

I'm letting a whole bunch of wild western salsify grow in the garden, this year. I plan to dig up the roots and eat them in the fall. Grasshoppers really love to poop on the seed heads. I think grasshoppers must like them a lot, because after I pruned all the seed heads off (there were a lot), I saw loads of grasshoppers hanging around on the onion seed heads and horseradish leaves by the salsify plants.
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karstopography
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Re: Foraging for Food

#18

Post: # 26284Unread post karstopography
Wed Jul 22, 2020 8:47 am

Agarita is another I want to do more with. Make some jelly or a mead. The beautiful tart berries get ripe around April. I have a good spot to forage for these.

Reading more on foraging, I found that yaupon leaves are a source of caffeine, maybe the only native plant in North America with caffeine. To get to the caffeine, the leaves have to be dried and toasted. My plot has about 50 million yaupon bushes so there’s no excuse for not making some tea. The berries are a different story, a good way to induce vomiting as I understand.
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Re: Foraging for Food

#19

Post: # 26305Unread post Cole_Robbie
Wed Jul 22, 2020 12:40 pm

I haven't tried them, but Jerusalem artichokes (which according to the article are neither artichokes nor from Jerusalem) grow as a weed in my area. There are miles of them along a highway I travel.

https://www.motherearthnews.com/real-fo ... s-zbcz1811
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Re: Foraging for Food

#20

Post: # 26357Unread post Shule
Wed Jul 22, 2020 11:12 pm

@Cole_Robbie
The Jerusalem artichokes I grow are a wild kind (from a Kansas wildflower store). They produce quite a lot of tubers, and they're pretty tasty. They seem to have a much firmer texture in the spring than in the fall, but probably have less inulin and more sugar in the spring. They probably have smaller tubers when they're not in someone's garden to be harvested and taken care of, but IMO, the size of the tubers doesn't matter a lot, unless you want to skin them. Small ones taste just like big ones (and you don't need that many as part of a meal). I think all sizes taste better in the fall. They're more like carrots than potatoes in the spring, flavor-wise (in my garden, anyway).

Anyway, if you like the taste, they're really easy to grow! But, if they grow in the wild anyway, and you want the space for other plants, it makes a lot of sense if you want to keep it as a forage crop. My concern would be they might get more pollutants on them, but that depends on the people in charge of the area, how far it is from roadways, etc.

One thing I like to do is to hunt for wild seeds of desirable plants. I mean, I like to look for seeds from wild plants so I can grow them. I actually haven't done it a lot, but the activity interests me at least as much as foraging for food.

If the wild Jerusalem artichokes in your area set seeds, it might be cool to save some. I'd be interested in pictures of the tubers.
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Location: SW Idaho, USA
Climate: BSk
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Elevation: 2,260 feet

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