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    Check Your Yard

    Spring has sprung.  You’ve made up for the hour of lost sleep.  The breezes are changing, and the pastel colors of flower and tree are brightening.  However, even before the equinox occurred, an amazing thing was happening-especially if you live in the southern half of the country.  Your yard was turning into a verdant produce department.  And I have to mention that our sons looked forward, each spring, to “eating out of the backyard”.  I can hear them moaning.  Let’s see, “grazing in the yard”, or “eating weeds” were other phrases we heard during the wild food harvest.

    CleaversWe grow bumper crops of dandelion, dock, chickweed, cleavers, henbit, plantain, and wild alliums.  No sowing required, no fertilizer needed.  You must have a ‘wild’ yard, of course.  One that is not free of those pesky weeds and wildflowers.  Clean lawns that look like carpet can be pleasing to the eye; but I love the tiny lavender, white, and baby pink flowers that cover a yard full of spring greens.  I also love knowing that I can feed my family nutritious green vegetables with little or no expense.  It makes me happy to eat as the Lord provides and enjoy the beauty at the same time.Dandelion~Henbit~Chickweed

    I want to encourage you to try something different this year.  If you have a wild yard, and don’t spray it or fertilize it, consider a side dish (or two) of weeds.  Your wild food harvest can take place year round and will vary by region.  As with most cultivated leafy green vegetables, wild greens are high in iron, vitamin C, magnesium, phosphorus, and calcium.  They are also full of fiber and chlorophyll.  Outstanding!  Each season brings its own beauty, and its own bountiful harvest.  So, don’t be discouraged if you miss the peak, spring, yard-grazing season - summer wild foods are just around the corner.

    ChickweedThere are many good resources to help with your foraging, and here are a couple of my favorite wild food guides.  Please don’t “eat out of the yard” until you have done your research.  Never taste or nibble anything that you are not confident is palatable.  And while the edible wild greens are abundant, some should only be consumed in small amounts.  Check out these resources and look for others that specifically cover your section of the country.

    I would love to hear about your wild foods experimentation - and please share your favorite recipes!Dock



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    Reader Comments (2)

    Inspiring ideas! This motivates me to get out into my yard and get my garden ready. Thanks for the links too.

    Dietrich was quite good at quoting his Aunt while we were in Seattle and in the forests of Washington. 'Let's just eat some of 'these' on our sandwich instead of buying lettuce", while pointing to some very large dandelion leaves...

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