Foraging resources

Eastern hemlockThis section of the Identify that Plant website acknowledges the growing interest in foraging for plants — whether for medicinal plants, edible wild plants, or plants with practical uses (for clothing, dyes, rope, basketry, fire-making, etc.).

To be included on this resource list, the information needs to be accurate, useful and credible.  A key component of foraging — particularly for edible or medicinal plants — is the ability to accurately identify a plant.  We know the potential dangers and risks of mis-identification.  (There is an on-line course available through Identify that Plant which thoroughly teaches plant identification skills.  The course is called “How to Identify Wildflowers” and is applicable to learning how to identify foraged plants.)

Within each section below, the authors and creators are listed in alphabetical order.  By clicking on their name, you will be taken to another page for that individual.  Each author page includes the following:

  • How long the person has been teaching the skill of foraging
  • Which geographical region is featured
  • Website
  • Materials available such as books, DVDs, videos, and apps
  • Reviews of the material
  • Ability to leave comments about your personal experience with the author and/or their materials

Note that plants frequently have more than one use — for example, as both an edible and a medicinal.  The authors who focus on wild edible plant foraging may include a notation of the plant’s medicinal benefits.  And vice versa.

The descriptions regarding a region are simply an acknowledgement that the author’s primary personal experience is with plants of that region.  It is common for plants in one region to be found throughout a much larger geographic area.  In order to help you determine the usefulness of a particular book to you, the chapters (and plants) outlined in the book’s Table of Contents are listed on the author’s page.

None of the resource lists offered here are comprehensive.  They are meant to be a starting point for you to put you in touch with some of the best available material.  If you are aware of other resources which you think might be a useful addition to these lists, you are welcome to forward those suggestions to Angelyn@identifythatplant.com for consideration.

It is essential that you cross-check any information you read or hear about a plant with as many other information sources as you can find.  Errors do occur — especially if an author “copies” another author’s material without having a personal experience with that plant.  And, naturally, the best learning situation is one in which you study directly with an experienced, knowledgeable forager.  Green Deane has gathered information and created a list of foragers to help you find one in your area.

Medicinal Plants

Mullein
Medicinal plant foraging authors

Gibbons, Euell
Howell, Patricia Kyritsi
Kress, Henriette
Moore, Michael

Plant Healer Magazine includes articles on foraging as well as lots of information about medicinal plants.

Medicinal plant foraging websites

Rosalee de la Forêt compiled a list of herbal blogs which she posted on her website (Methow Valley Herbs):  Herbal Blogroll

 

Edible Wild Plants

Stinging nettleFacebook page for Edible Wild Plants group:  http://www.facebook.com/groups/ediblewildplants/

Edible wild plant foraging authors

Benoliel, Doug
Brill, “Wildman” Steve
Brown, Tom
Cohen, Russ
Deane, Green
Derby, Blanche Cybele
Gibbons, Euell
Haines, Arthur
Kallas, John
Nyerges, Christopher
Thayer, Samuel

Reviews of edible wild plant books — written by Samuel Thayer:  Instructional Edible Wild Plant Books

Edible wild plant foraging websites

First Ways – Urban Foraging
Merriwether’s Guide to Edible Wild Plants of Texas and the Southwest
The 3 Foragers
Urban Outdoor Skills

Edible wild plant recipes

Hunger and Thirst
Leda’s Urban Homestead
Transitional Gastronomy