May 15, 2005

Wild Edible Plants; Spring Wildflowers

(Photos and report by Walter Muma)

Eight people turned up for a day in the woods. It was a cool day, with a few sprinkles of rain.
We spent the morning identifying various wildflowers and edible plants that were growing tin the area. We also gathered some wild edibles for lunch.
Some people decided to simply get down and graze! Here's Cameron having a feed of garlic mustard.

Ok ... this was a posed photo done as a joke!

The root (tuber) of Toothwort.
A patch of Wild Ginger.
Garlic Mustard, an invasive alien plant that was originally brought to this continent as a food plant.
Wild Leeks
Trout Lily
Lunch. We brought backpacking stoves and water, and cooked various combinations of wild edibles, including Wild Leek, Trout Lily, Toothwort, Wild Ginger, and Garlic Mustard.
After lunch we continued our explorations. This is Mitrewort.
Squirrel Corn.
Some of the group left early, while the remaining three continued on.
Here is a list of the plants we identified today. Flowering plants have an "F" after their name. Edible plants have an "E" after their name. The list is probably not complete.
  • bloodroot (1 F)
  • wild ginger F E
  • blue violet F E
  • canada violet F E
  • coltsfoot F E (mostly in seed)
  • yellow violet F E
  • early meadow rue F
  • toothwort F E
  • cutleaf toothwort F
  • marsh marigold F
  • virginia waterleaf
  • burdock E
  • garlic mustard F E
  • strawberry F E
  • white pine E
  • spruce E
  • false solomon seal E
  • trout lily E F
  • wild leek E
  • gooseberry
  • baneberry F
  • rattlesnake fern
  • ostrich fern E
  • christmas fern
  • maidenhair fern
  • small-flowered leafcup
  • large-flowered bellwort F
  • long-spurred violet F E
  • spring beauty F E
  • wood betony F
  • mitrewort F
  • rose twisted stalk (not 100% sure)
  • red elderberry F
  • white trillium F
  • red trillium F
  • sarsaparilla
  • leatherwood
  • wild bergamont
  • dandelion E F
  • orange-fruited horse gentian
  • squirrel corn F
  • poison ivy
  • virginia creeper
  • various trees


Here is a list of birds we identified today:
  • yellow warbler
  • red-winged black bird
  • chickadee
  • common yellowthroat
  • crow
  • flicker
  • canada goose
  • swamp sparrow
  • song sparrow
  • goldfinch
  • overnbird
  • ruffed grouse
  • robin
  • downy woodpecker
  • rose-breasted grosbeak
  • wood thrush
  • blue-grey gnatcatcher
  • least flycatcher
  • great crested flycatcher
  • great blue heron
  • field sparrow
Everyone had an informative and enjoyable day, in spite of the cool temperature and overcast skies. We got back to the cars just as it started to rain. Thank you to everyone who came out and contributed their knowledge and learning to make this a successful day!

For more information about Wild Edible Plants, please go to the Wildwood Survival website, Edible Plants section.


The material on this page is copyright © by the original author/artist/photographer. This website is created, maintained & copyright © by Walter Muma
Please respect this copyright and ask permission before using or saving any of the content of this page for any purpose

Thank you for visiting!