Harvesting weeds? - VeggieBoards
Forum Jump: 
 
Thread Tools
#1 Old 06-16-2013, 05:09 AM
 
DragonDeb's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Northwest Indiana
Posts: 36

I have plenty of weeds in my garden and yard, and I was wondering if there is a resource where I can identify what they are and if they are healthy to eat?  For example, I have a lot of thistle and stuff that looks like dandelion greens without flowers.  I also have a lot of what we have always called Pigweed (whitish diamond-shaped leaves, two leaves facing one way and two leaves facing the other way).

 

If I could put this stuff in my juice, it would be great, but I don't know how to check if it's safe.

DragonDeb is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#2 Old 06-18-2013, 03:12 PM
Tom
Veggie Regular
 
Tom's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2002
Location: Upstate NY
Posts: 5,195

I would borrow a field guide to edible wild plants from the local library, to start with. I've come across a few of them; the best will have information about inedible plants which look similar to the edible ones which might be confused with them, and tell you how to tell them apart.

 

I had one out of the library a year ago- the author's name was Callas, I think. I'll do a bit of googling...

 

So far, my favorite edible weeds are lamb's-quarters (which I call wild spinach- it's a relative of spinach and tastes like it), garlic mustard, and purslane. I've tried violet leaves, common mallow, dandelion greens, common plantain, but they either taste kind of bitter, or are too bland, or just taste like grass.

 

EDITED TO ADD: "Edible Wild Plants: Wild Foods From Dirt To Plate", by John Kallas, is the one I borrowed. But there are many guides to wild foods, dating back to before Euell Gibbons published his "Stalking the Wild Asparagus" and other books. I'd stay with the more recently-written ones, though- some foods thought to be edible have been found to have unhealthy effects for some of us. For example, Comfrey was formerly used as a tea or vegetable, but it can sometimes mess up your liver, and now they advise using it externally only (I'm not sure what it's used for).

 

We had a thread about foraging about a year ago...


Peasant (1963-1972) and Fluffy (1970s?-1982- I think of you as 'Ambrose' now)- Your spirits outshone some humans I have known. Be happy forever.
Tom is offline  
#3 Old 06-18-2013, 05:21 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Ewe Nanny's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2012
Posts: 710

Thistles are in the asparagus family and the peeled stems apparently have a similar texture to celery:

While searching for the above image I found a weed eating website:

http://www.eattheweeds.com/

 

Dandelion leaves are edible; they are less bitter before flowering:

They look similar to catsear (cat's ear?) leaves so be careful!

 

Clovers are a lucky find (cough):

 

Plantago:

 

Wild garlic:

 

Garlic mustard:

 

Water mint:

 

You can even eat nettles, cooked or raw, without the sting:

 

Nettle soup, spanakopita and risotto recipes (can be made with dairy and egg substitutes):

http://www.guardian.co.uk/lifeandstyle/2012/mar/30/nettle-recipes-hugh-fearnley-whittingstall


"Treat others as you wish to be treated."

- The Golden Rule

"No snowflake in an avalanche feels responsible."

- Voltair

"Be the change you wish to see in the world."

- Mahatma Ghandi

"Even dust piled up will grow into a mountain."

- Japanese Proverb

Ewe Nanny is offline  
Sponsored Links
Advertisement
 
#4 Old 06-18-2013, 06:48 PM
 
DragonDeb's Avatar
 
Join Date: May 2013
Location: Northwest Indiana
Posts: 36

Wow, thanks!  I think I'll try the dandelion first.  I've actually bought dandelion greens at the store before, so this shouldn't be much different.  

DragonDeb is offline  
#5 Old 06-18-2013, 07:24 PM
Veggie Regular
 
Shauna_m's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 580
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3patCDVUooc&feature=youtube_gdata_player

I really enjoyed this guys YouTube videos. Very informative! I've found about a dozen edible plants in my yard.
Shauna_m is offline  
#6 Old 02-21-2014, 12:28 PM
Bracing for snow
 
ilikekale's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Ohio
Posts: 489
Cool thread. I'm thinking of doing some this year. Dandelions for sure. I have forests of clover! wink3.gif

Ken
ilikekale is offline  
#7 Old 02-21-2014, 08:24 PM
Oryzatarian
 
Auxin's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2010
Location: USDA z7a
Posts: 1,359

Henbit, wild lettuce, and dwarf mallow are my 3 big food weeds.

Henbit is often the first edible thing to grow, I had some in my oatmeal this morning.

Dwarf mallow has a very mild flavor and it goes in my oatmeal when the henbit goes to seed in spring.

Wild lettuce is bitter, and in large amounts sedative, but I add some to my curries in early spring because, well, its free ;)

 

I avoid harvesting dandelion leaves because I dont want to hurt my dandelions, the roots are used in my medicines. Wild chicories look like dandelions when not flowering, they entered my veggie garden from a local park after I had to patiently wait while an obese cranky looking skunk was having dinner on a walking path.

And I got to harvest wild mint today :)

Auxin is offline  
#8 Old 02-22-2014, 01:55 AM
Bracing for snow
 
ilikekale's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2013
Location: Ohio
Posts: 489
Well anything like that is still under 24" of snow in my yard wink3.gif

But, on my short list for reading:

http://www.amazon.com/Weeds-Richard-Mabey-ebook/dp/B004HW77ZS/ref=sr_1_3?s=digital-text&ie=UTF8&qid=1393062796&sr=1-3&keywords=weed

Ken
ilikekale is offline  
Reply

Quick Reply
Message:
Options

Register Now

In order to be able to post messages on the VeggieBoards forums, you must first register.
Please enter your desired user name, your email address and other required details in the form below.
User Name:
If you do not want to register, fill this field only and the name will be used as user name for your post.
Password
Please enter a password for your user account. Note that passwords are case-sensitive.
Password:
Confirm Password:
Email Address
Please enter a valid email address for yourself.
Email Address:

Log-in


Thread Tools
Show Printable Version Show Printable Version
Email this Page Email this Page


Forum Jump: 

Posting Rules  
You may post new threads
You may post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are On
Pingbacks are On
Refbacks are Off