Nettles Monograph for Foragers

Plus insight into how nettles can help the prostate. Urtica dioica/ Urtica repens Stinging nettles Urticacea family Nettles are so well known by everyone on this island that they practically need no description. The genus Urtica includes about 50 species of annuals and perennials that are widespread throughout the temperate regions. The generic name Urtica…

Reclaiming Health Autonomy! Forage for Digestive herbs

The digestive system.  How it works and what to forage to help maintain gut health. “The primary seat of insanity generally, is in the region of the stomach and small intestine” ~ unknown Overview The digestive system is responsible for the healthy assimilation of food and the elimination of waste. It primarily consists of the…

Shepherds Purse Monograph for Foragers

Capsella bursa-pastoris Shepherd purse Brassicaceae A remarkable edible and medicinal herb in many ways.  This plant grows quickly in numerous settings, so that with sharp  eyes, we can generally find it all year round. Shepherds purse is the only member of the genus Capsella and is native to temperate zones in Europe, and now naturalised…

Lime / Linden Monograph for Foragers

  “I think that I shall never see, a billboard as lovely as a tree.  Perhaps, unless the billboards fall, I’ll never see a tree at all” ~ Ogden Nash Tilia cordata / T. Platyphyllus /  T.vulgaris   (small-leaved lime / large-leaved lime / common lime) Lime / Linden Tiliacea family. What’s not to love…

What is edible anyway?

Musings from a culinary perspective…because for foragers and foraging guides, the question of what is edible comes up all the time, and I find that this simple question cannot be answered simply. So its perfect for someone who likes to talk! On my own journey of discovery with wild plants, I’ve come to know that…

Japanese Knotweed & beetroot relish

What better way to try and halt the spread of invasive edible plants but to eat them. Make sure you are picking from a patch of knotweed that isn’t sprayed with herbicides. So better to find some well off the beaten track. Word of warning: Its seriously good! Ingredients: (all approximate, sorry!) Good big bunch…

Coltsfoot monograph for foragers

Tussilago farfara Coltsfoot Asteraceae family “A thing of beauty is a joy forever” ~ John Keats (1795-1821) If you were to go to an apothecary in the 17th and 18th Century, you would recognise this flower immediately from the signage outside. We know from Roman times that this herb was one of our ‘go-to’ remedies…

Hawthorn monograph for foragers

 Crataegus monogyna / C. leavigata   Hawthorns Rosaceae family “The art in medicine consists of amusing the patient whilst nature cures the disease.” ~ Francois Voltaire (1694 – 1778) These two plants, recognised as one, are truly remarkable. As common a tree as you can get, these spring flowering, summer-beckoning mainstays of the hedge, offer us unique…

Know your carrots (part 1)

 A guide to probably the trickiest plant family you can get to know This plant family is one of the most common plant families you will encounter when foraging for food in Britain. It also provides us with some of our staple vegetables, as well as a range of culinary herbs and spices. The world’s…

Oats. A monograph for foragers

Avena sativa & Avena fatua Oats / wild oats Poaceae family “When young, sow wild oats…When old, grow sage” Cereal grain crops continue to be the dominant component of human diets, comprising more than a third of what we eat. Oats is my favourite grain because it can be used as a preventative and curative…