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I was wondering, how many others on this board have actually picked some of their own food from the wild? In my opinion gathering wild food indigenous to your area is one of the best actions one can take to protecting the ecosystem of their area. Commercial farming has done much to change the ecosystem of North America to the point were it vastly different from the past.<br><br><br><br>
Common cultivated crops such as: wheat, rice, soybeans, various fruits and vegetables have overtaken the habitat that once acted as a home to North Americas own indigenous grains, fruits and vegetables. Even more than this the habitats of wild animals have been threatened with the expansion of commercial agriculture. Basically North America has had European and Asian crops superimposed on it when these plants should have never been here. The result has been disastrous to native plants and animals.<br><br><br><br>
Therefore as much as I can I gather from the wild many of my own fruits and vegetables. Perhaps this is because foraging has been of cultural importance to the people of my mother and father. Since I was a child I was raised to pick the multitude of berries that flourish in southeast Alaska (26 edible berries) as well as a variety of seaweeds and other plants. I will give a rundown of what I collect.<br><br><br><br>
Mushrooms: These fungi offer as much diversity within it's kingdom as any other group of plants or animals. Chanterelles, matsutake, talupwau, oysters, reishi, porcini, yellow-foot are a few of the many fungi that my friends and I have tracked down for our own sustenance.<br><br><br><br>
Berries: Alaska offers a diverse selection of berries including more exotic and flavorful versions of the common cultivated blueberry. Other favorites include thimble berry, salmon berry, soap berry which turns frothy when beaten, and cranberries.<br><br><br><br>
Sea Vegetables: Sea vegetables have long been gathered by indigenous Northwest Coast peoples. Some that have gained prominence over others include: laak'usk(related to the species which is used in nori), glaach(dulse), s'oow a leafy green sea vegetable and ghow which is a kelp collected after herring have laid their eggs on it.<br><br><br><br>
I believe collecting these foods is important to preserving the ecosystem of our homes. If people look at the wilderness as a place of sustenance then perhaps we will value it much more. I encourage others to share what they have collected or perhaps develop an interest in it if they have not already.
 

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We eat apples from our own apple trees. We don't use pesticides or anything, and the rotting apples feed the deer, rabbits, and horses. Me and my sister used to go to my cousin's farm (she has 200 acres of forests) and collect blackberries for snacking and making jam. I wish I had more time to go back out and do that.
 

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I remember my mother once cooking milkweed for me while we were on vacation when I was little. I have no idea how she knew how to do that since she's an NYC girl. I'll have to ask her about that.<br><br><br><br>
Another weed that's good to eat if you have it in your area is purslane. And people eat dandelions of course, but I find them too bitter.<br><br><br><br>
I have a pomegranate tree in my yard and rosemary.
 
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