It might seem a bit strange for a gardener and horticulturalist to look into foraging for food. I grow a whole stack of edibles in my garden. Why would we want to forage for food when we can grow it?
More than anything, I guess I was interested in what ‘weeds’ are edible and medicinal. I know the basics of some common weeds like purslane and dandelion but I wanted to know more.
Likewise I’ve used medicinal herbs for years. Comfrey poultice for bones, sage for sore throat, fennel and fenugreek to clear the lungs etc etc. But these aren’t typically found in the wilds of Australia.
We don’t tend to go camping and find fenugreek by the creek! Most of us wouldn’t know fenugreek if we fell over it.
I also know that so much of our witchy heritage has been lost…. literally burnt! I wanted to claim back some of my heritage.
With our minds embedded in our modern society we tend to forget that humans have lived for thousands of years without modern medicine. We used to rely on wild plants. We used to forage for food and medicine. I wanted to take back some of that knowledge but I didn’t want to poison myself in the process of discovery!
I purchased a small book and found many common edible weeds. The number one key rule the authors identified is: Identify your plant beyond a shadow of a doubt!
Months later whilst camping in the hinterland of the Sunshine Coast in Queensland, Australia I met a young man who was foraging for food. I instantly recognised an awesome blog topic presenting itself and so grabbed my camera and started asking him questions.
Here’s the interview with Nick Blake from Wild Forage Australia. Hope you enjoy it and remember if you’re going to forage for food in the wild, please be sure you know what you are doing… best to forage with someone who has experience.