Foraging for Wild Greens in Spring

Foraging for wild greens, including culinary botany, shopping the back-yard supermarket and wild greens recipes.


| March/April 1988



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Day lilies are common refugees from long-forgotten flower gardens, and provide several fine foods.


PHOTO: RUNK SCHOENBURGER/GRANT HEILMAN PHOTOGRAPHY

Wild greens waken winter-slowed blood with flavors of change for spring, includes culinary botany, foraging in the back-yard and wild greens recipes. (See the wild greens photos in the image gallery.)

Foraging for Wild Greens in Spring

At first it was a mystery. A small-town boy, cannonballing a Schwinn through the mud streets of his neighborhood, puzzled over the oldsters who, bent and dark-clothed, seemed to follow the melting snow across their greening lawns. I had a five-year-old's understanding of ethnic diversity, and a polite child's unwillingness to disturb the unfolding of this old-country ritual with my questions. At home, though, asking was encouraged.

"Dandelion greens," my mother explained. "They're supposed to be a spring tonic, to thin the blood. They're tasty, too."

"People eat them?" I was familiar enough with wild onions and berries to have skipped summer lunches in their favor, but this was different. We were talking weeds here.

"Sure. We'll try some tomorrow if you'd like."

And I've been gathering spring greens ever since.

savannagal
5/24/2016 12:00:45 PM

What is meant be shoots? To which part of the plant are you referring? Leaves? Stem where flower is forming?






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