How much do you know about foraged goodies? Do you know the stuff you can go outside and just pick off a plant and eat? Get a guide from Amazon to build your stash here. Very quickly you can fill up a cabinet for the winter full of dried herbs, fruit, greens, veggies, fruits, and mushrooms and bring them to life with some hot water. Though they’re not always filling for long; and most people will have no idea what to do with them, your cabinet full of tea is truly something unique only you may enjoy. It is a great way to supplement nutrients that may be missing in your diet, it’s fun to explore unique and comforting flavors, and it may keep you from over eating starchy or calorie dense foods.
Some people are very weary about eating wild plants. It is wise to find someone to help explain the plants to you in person, talk to your doctor about medicine cross reactions or medical issues, but no one can replace the time needed to study and learn all you can about your favorite plants and possible dangers. There are deadly look alike plants (like water hemlock) that need to be learned about right along with the plants sought after. Some people may have allergies or a food intolerance (where one lacks an enzyme to digest the food). Proceed carefully trying new things, only one new plant every 3 days, and only try a little bit. I’ve even read that you may not even want to ingest it when first trying a new plant, just rub a little on your elbow and later your lip to see if it itches or burns. It’s a good idea to follow the plant through it’s life cycle to get a positive identification. Also, know your area well, where you collect to avoid environmental toxins. Finally, don’t exploit plants for personal gain, if everyone went picking all the good stuff without thought, we might lose whole populations of plants in a forest. That could be very disastrous for the critters who live there and the ecosystem. So it is important to gage how much is there and encourage it’s growth by finding out how to grow more of it. Every webpage and video watched about different local plants is worth more than gold, but not everyone’s gold is the same. You are not going to remember everything about a plant in one study session and new uses for them are written about them all the time. It’s up to us to use good science to keep safe.
When the pioneers tried surviving here in America they were very sickly during wintertime until the Indians let them in on a secret. They were getting their vitamin c from evergreens. (Stay away from evergreens with red berries, example: Yews, those are poisonous).
and am taking care of 3 more little ones. It is so comforting to know we can take care of each other.
My next favorite is Mint.
This plant is so rigorous it is invasive. Pinch a few liters of leaves on a stem and put it in water and you can replicate it prolifically. When it grow roots it’s ready to be planted outside. It would be wise to put it in it’s own container especially in soggy areas, although it will find it’s way through cracks even in concrete.
When you have enough to harvest, snip bundles of it leaving 2 or 3 liters of leaves. After a few days of drying put it in an airtight jar to keep the oils in. Or you can make a hydrosol with it by putting it with some water in a distiller, it lends a sweet scent in toothpaste and soap making.
Mint is also antibacterial and soothing for gums.
Dandelions are great candidates for eating and saving. No part of the dandelion is poisonous. The dandelion has no poisonous look alike, so enjoy cats ear, chicory, or flat weed. Here’s a great video on how to process the roots from Lonnie’s You Tube Channel: Far Northern Bushcraft.
Plantain is something every one should know about. It is very healing for the skin and the seeds are delicious.
Purple Archangel. Tastes like mushrooms. I like it crunchy and raw (albeit a bit fuzzy), but it is truly delicious and looses the fuzziness when cooked!
Mullien, also known as cowboys toilet paper. It is known for it’s analgesic, expectorant properties, and more. It can get the mucus out of your throat when your feeling a little under the weather.
Horsetail (equisetum arvense) A great source of silica, which is required by the body to fix calcium. I make a tea with it for teeth and gum heath.
Yarrow is great with mint to bring down a fever. It is antibacterial so it can give your immunity some extra help. Yarrow can be transplanted in the falls. Harvest the flowers and dry.
Curly Dock I like to make tea with the seeds. Soon, I’d like to try them sprouted.
In conclusion, that’s about 10 different examples to hand tailor your own stash of tea to enjoy waking up to, or winding down with in the evening. What you put in your cupboard all depends on the characters you meet in your area and your individual properties. I look forward to hearing about your adventures. Thanks for reading ☺ .