Try forming an Edible Wild Plants Club if there are a few people in your community that are interested in learning more about foraging for wild foods.
You could get planning underway this winter and be up and running for hikes and events when greenery comes up in the spring. A club can stand on its own or be a side project of another group like an environmental organization, community kitchen, heritage group, gardening collective, or 50+ Club. Those are all great groups to partner with too. You could start off by hosting a public food skills workshop to build community interest and from there form a club from the people who attend.
Edible wild plants clubs can choose to meet year-round or only during harvest seasons. Harvests are most abundant in summer and fall. Consider hosting a few events or meetings during prime harvesting times and meet regularly in the winter and spring too, to inspire people with presentations or films when the harvest is limited.
Use reliable edible wild plant guidebooks to inform what you do as a club and make your own plant journals to document what you find and help you to remember where to find it again later.
Here are some ideas for what edible wild plant clubs can do together:
- Go through the content in the Edible Wild Plants Workshop over the course of a few events.
- Go on edible walks, hikes, snowshoe trips and maybe even camping trips as a group.
- Do 'show and tells' where people highlight a plant they really like.
- Host meals with foods made with wild ingredients.
- Organize a community kitchen session to preserve big harvests of berries or greens.
- Focus on just one or two plants per meeting, giving them lots of attention. Pick out plants from guidebooks that members are less familiar with and learn about them.
- Invite presenters to visit the group to talk about plants or give sessions on related topics like wilderness first aid.
- Make connections with local environmental groups, nature clubs, trail associations, parks and MUN Botanical Garden to collaborate on activities.
- Learn about the other common uses of edible wild plants. For example, plants can be used in homemade natural remedies, beauty products, dyes, textiles, for decoration, and in cleaning products.
- Learn about the fascinating historical relationships between plants and people, called ethnobotany.
- Connect with Foray NL to learn about mushrooms too.
If you choose to create an Edible Wild Plants Club, contact us (firstname.lastname@example.org; 709-237-4026) to access additional resources and connect with other groups across the province.