|You can eat it all!|
I know all these weeds. I've known them intimately since I was about six years old when it was my (very detestable) job to pull weeds out of the cracks of the patio. I got to know them even better a few years later when I started taking an interest in wild plants and their uses. I guess I was kind of a weird kid. But I liked me, and I had a couple friends that liked me, so I think I was a good weird. Personally, I think it's weird that anyone wouldn't be interested in food you can get for free from your yard without any planting or tending.
So, these weeds. You can eat every darn thing in this picture! English plantain, wood sorrel, and clover are all very nice greens, though that plantain would probably not be too tasty. Tough and stringy. You've got to get that when it first comes up. You can still chew it up and smear it on a bee sting or scrape, though.
Are you interested in learning to eat some of your local backyard plants? It's very easy. I have a strategy for you.
First, go outside and look around. What's growing abundantly? If you're looking for something to eat, you want enough to actually fill you up and not completely obliterate that species from your environment. So you need something that's really growing like crazy. Also, it should be in a spot where dogs do not regularly come by, a place that doesn't get sprayed by chemicals and pesticides, and preferably not near a lot of road traffic.
|Telephone pole = lots of dog urine! Also, too close to the road. Exhaust and other pollutants galore.|
|Purple dead nettle|
Violets! The little blue flowers mixed in there are the speedwell plant, beautiful but not particularly tasty. Violets, however, are extremely healthy and very dense in Vitamin C. The leaves and the flowers are both edible in any way you would like to eat them. I've yet to try making candied violet blossoms, but you can.
This is just a tiny smattering of some plants you might be finding outside this spring in the eastern United States. Now trot out to your lawn and pick yourself a salad for dinner!
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