Marion Gabriela Wick, Wild Food Forager and Ethnobotanical Enthusiast in Germany
Name: Marion Gabriela Wick
Occupation: Farmer, seminar teacher, writer, cook
Place of Residence: A 3.5-acre homestead in a semi-secluded location, belonging to municipality of Horsbuell in the district of Wiedingharde (Danish: Vidingherred) County North Frisia, Germany (Former Danish territory)
Background: Homestead born and raised, Marion always was deeply connected to nature and rural life. Her grandfather taught her about edible wild fruit and sea food, her mother and grandmother taught her about herbal medicine, cooking, and magic. She naturally learned all aspects of homesteading, including cooking, preserving, fermenting, raising and butchering livestock just at the side.
Marion spent most of her youth out at the heart of nature, eating berries, climbing trees, making friends with wild animals, building boats and play huts from scrap wood, shaping local clay into simple pottery, and making ropes and baskets from all kinds of fiber. You even could have found her skinning a dead rat to try and cure its hide, or expressing her wild natural joy by swimming in a storm surge or dancing with an F1 across a harvested field. More than once, her parents had to lock her up in the house to prevent her from going outside during most severe weather.
Being fairly good at school, she went on what she now calls “a trip to university” to study a few semesters of medicine, but couldn’t agree with city life. “Most people are sick, due to a lack of inner and outer nature” she stated, “This can’t be cured in hospitals made from steel and concrete.” And thus she left university and went back to her family’s homestead to live.
Marion now has a grown daughter who is studying to become a biology and history teacher, living on the family homestead along with Marion and “making the best of all possible jams.” After leaving university, Marion took up teaching people with medical and other professional backgrounds about herbs and wild fruit and ran a market business selling her homemade produce.
A local television company asked Marion to make a brief series on cooking with wild edibles for them in 2002. This was the start for her to begin writing articles for webzines, magazines, and newspapers and a book on local edibles.
During summers, Marion guides tours to the “European Wadden Sea National Park” and the salt marshes located almost at her doorstep. She wholeheartedly engages in protecting Wiedinghardes unique “fruity heritage,” made up from thousands of wild and heritage fruit trees and shrubs growing along roads and trenches, around fields and farm houses, planted by generations of farmers, trying to protect their cottages and grain fields from the regions very harsh weather conditions.
Current Projects: Marion is writing a book on culinary, medical, and other use of roses and rosehips and is translating her own website and Wiedingharde’s local beach site into English. She has started to create a cell phone-guided “virtual and real wild fruit trail” through Wiedingharde, which will have its texts in German, Danish, and English language to allow people to explore the region’s heritage on their own, riding bicycles, driving cars, or hiking.
“I’m not too good at fundraising, because I feel uncomfortable talking to officials,” she admits, “So it probably will take a while until this project will be all on its feet.”
More Places to Find Marion on the Web:
The Fairies Garden (her own seminar website) also on Facebook
Südwesthörner (tourist website of the local beach) also on Facebook
Marion on Facebook (English)Currently the two top websites are almost completely in German, but are being translated into English step by step. As long as translation isn’t finished, Marion promises: “If you are interested in certain topics, feel free to email me at any time, to obtain the required information in English.”