At our September monthly garden club meeting, Pixie LaPlante spoke about edible, yet often ignored plants. She brought along samples of a variety of plants that we all “see” in our gardens, but often dismiss as “weeds”, when in fact, many of them are edible and highly nutritious!
She also points out you should be “2000 % certain” you know what the plant is before you eat it – some similar looking plants have very dangerous cousins that can kill.
As excellent guides to begin learning more about these plants, she recommended two books and a web site:
Dr. James Duke, various websites & books:
An ethnobotanist, Dr. Duke has brought his knowledge of plants to the USDA’s on line database and authored numerous books:http://thegreenfarmacygarden.com/jim-and-peggy-duke/ http://www.ars-grin.gov/duke http://www.greenpharmacy.com/ http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/James_A._Duke (contains extensive list of his books) http://www.medicinehunter.com/dr-jim-duke
Edible Wild Plants: Wild Foods from Dirt to Plate, by John Kallas, Ph.D.
Harvesting and eating wild greens.http://www.wildfoodadventures.com/
Botany in a Day, by Thomas J. Elpel.
The “Botany 101” book on how to learn to identify plants.http://www.hollowtop.com/ http://www.elpel.info/
[photos & images: from Dr. Duke & Dr. Kallas & T. Elpel’s websites]