Common edibles found in the backyard garden and other Not so wilderness areas. Native plants are plants that have the origination in the geographical area described. Though they may have spread and adapted to other areas or zones. Local plants are plants that thrive in, and can be found growing in a particular area regardless of the plants place of origin. For this course we will focus on local plants as many of the edible plants in our area are not natives though the definitely thrive here. Will identify which ones are truly natives to this area. Edible does not necessarily mean tasty. Wild edibles come with a wide variety of flavors and textures that have been absent in our diet for a long time. Some of the characteristics can be more intense with wild edibles such as Bitter Sour Texture Smell Arial parts Roots, rhizomes, or bulbs Barks Seeds I am not a botanist. You take the responsibility upon yourselves to properly identify plants. Plants that have potentially toxic look-a-likes will be shown. Some plants have edible parts AND toxic parts. Some plants are edible, but only when prepared correctly. Seek out further instruction and reference materials. Stout, hairless perennial from a yellow tap root. 1 – 5 feet tall. Leaves are alternate, lance to oblong shaped and have wavy margins. Flowers on green spikes with single seeded fruit. Seeds have 3 angled heart shaped bracts. Leaves can be used in small amounts and have a slight sour and lemony taste. Young leaves are best and make a good spring green. Contains oxalic acid, and should be cooked though raw is alright too. Branching, low Leaves and young shoots spreading, succulent annual. To 1 foot Leaves alternate and spatula shaped, smooth and shiny. Tips rounded. Flowers yellow and stalk less. are edible raw or steamed. Many people pickle the shoots. Has a nice tangy taste with a peppery kick. Has the highest concentration of omega3 fatty acids out of any other green plant. Perennial from creeping, Rhizomes are dug and tuberous rhizome, with pithy stems that are unbranched. Up to 10 feet. Sword like leaves, light green and 1 inch at base. Tiny flowers in long dense cylinder at stem tips. cooked to eat like potato. Must be cooked if picked during or after flowering. Base of stalks can be pulled from crown and used like asparagus or celery. Best if steamed or sautéed. New seed heads can be eaten like corn on the cob. Hairless perennial from Whole plant edible. stout tap root. Milky sap. Young leaves are best Leaves in a basal rosette raw, cook the older ones of oblong to oblanceolate like spinach or put in leaves, deeply lobed and soup. toothed. Blanched crown tops are Familiar flowers in excellent sautéed or solitary head on hollow, battered and fried. leafless stem Young root can be roasted like potato. Weedy annual Young leaves and Leaves alternate and delicious and mild fresh in salads or smoothies. Greens excellent sautéed or prepared like spinach. Seeds and bracts can be used in gumbos as substitute for okra. Can be eaten fresh as well. High in mucilage and can be a little slimy shallowly palmate, 5-7 lobes, margins are scalloped. Flowers small and pink to white with petals notched on tips Seeds in cheese like wheels covered by bracts. Hairless perennial. Young leaves are good Up to 18 inches. raw in salads, smoothies, or on sandwiches. Older leaves should be cooked or steamed as they tend to be more bitter and tougher in texture. Leaves broadly oval in basal rosettes with prominent parallel veins converging at base. Bases rounded at thickened stalks margin wavy. Flowers dense in elongated spikes. Large leaved biennial. Young roots used as a stir 2-9 feet. fry vegetable in Japan. Gobo. Young roots can be cooked like potato. Stalks and large leaf petioles can be pealed and eaten fresh or steamed. Leaves large rhubarb like, widely ovate, on long petioles. White and wooly below stalk is solid and celery like. Seed enclosed in burr like head with hooked spines. Deciduous shrub often lacking a main trunk. Up to 25 feet. Leaves are pinnately compound with 3-9 leaflets ecliptic to ovate. Tips pointed and midrib often curved. Creamy white flowers in flat top clusters. Berries appear blue but are nearly black and covered with a fine wax. Ripe berries are used for jams, syrups and wines. Must be cooked or may be toxic. Contains cyanide compounds and must be heated to remove and destroy harmful compounds. All parts of plant are toxic except fruits and flowers when prepared correctly. Upright annual, grows upright until before flowering. Leaves are alternate, roughly diamond shaped and roughly toothed. Waxy and mealy in appearance, white underneath. Flowers are white to creamy, are small and radially symmetrical on dense cymes. Young shoots with leaves and steamed or cooked. Young leaves cooked like spinach. Shoots can be pealed and used like asparagus. Contains oxalic acid Seeds can be used as flour substitute, or in a mush or hot cereal. Older plants have strong undesirable flavor. Deciduous shrub, upright. Fruits are delicious and tart Stems smooth an without thorns or hair. Leaves, light green with shallowly 3- lobed, lobes rounded. Yellow tubular flowers, five parted with “spicy” fragrance. Yellow to orange to red berries. raw. Can be used for jellies, jams and syrups. High in vitamin C. Easy to domesticate and bring home to the garden and domesticate for further production over the years. Perennial with stiff, Leaves can be picked and stinging hairs, forming thickets. Leaves opposite and mostly ovate, on angled stems, margins coarsely toothed. Flowers tiny, and greenish in drooping clusters, boiled like spinach Heat or drying evaporates the stinging acid. Used in soups and as other spring greens. Upright coarse weed. Leaves eaten raw in Annual. Leaves opposite and ovate deeply veined. Green to light green. Flowers on elongates spike that are bristly and may droop. salads , or boiled or steamed like spinach. Seeds used like grain and used as such. High in vitamins and has been used as a food plant for thousands of years. Deciduous shrub, stems Hips can be used year slender with straight prickles. Leaves pinnately compound with 5-7 widely oval, hairless leaflets. Margins with gland tipped teeth Flowers pink to rose. Hips round and red to orange without sepal attached. round for food. Seeds must be scraped out and then they can be boiled for tea or pounded and dried like any other dried fruit. High in vitamin C and other beneficial vitamins. Evergreen upright or spreading 2-10 feet. Inner bark and roots bright yellow Leave pinnately compound, leathery and holly like 5- 11 leaflets, flat and oblong with spine tipped teeth. Flowers yellow at branch tips. Berries blue to purple covered with whitish film Berries used for fresh eating. Though can be sour and astringent. Used for juices, jams, jellies, and syrups and wines. Plants included here are a some of the most easily identified and used native and local plants. This list is in no way exhaustive, and further research can show a plethora of useful plants available in your own back yard. Simpler offers a wide variety of services, including garden consulting, where Simpler Sam can visit your property and show you the edible and medicinal plants growing right under your nose, that you may have disregarded as weeds or other undesirables. These consultations include information on identification and the use of the plants identified.