By Sandra Musser Weaver
By Sandra Musser Weaver
Edible wild plants are much more nutritious than their domestic counterparts...if there is one. Only the strongest wild plants survive, leaving the best, and most nutritious of the line to continue the species. Wild plants have survived on their own without the help of modern agricultural practices. The healthiest grow in soil that has not been farmed.
Their domestic counterparts on the other hand, have been spoon-fed with the equivalent of steroids to keep them alive and grow as large as possible.
Conventional farming practices deplete the soil of crucial minerals and elements. Wild areas are re-mineralize when the plants die, and their foliage is allowed to go back to the earth in a continuous cycle.
Edible wild plants have a much greater diversity than domestic plants. There were literally hundreds or in some cases thousands of varieties of edible wild plants in the now domesticated species of rice, corn, wheat, lettuce, squash, etc. Now ask yourself how many different domesticated species of these edible wild plants do you find in the grocery store now? In many cases you can now count the cultivated varieties of a given species on one hand.
Lack of variation in species is setting us up for the equivalent of another deadly potato blight scenario. If the people in the mid 1800's had known about wild edible plants many would have survived those devastating times.
Our bodies cannot assimilate vitamins from food or supplements properly, without the essential minerals and elements in the right quantities. Yes, minerals and vitamins work in a synergistic/sembiotic way together. Wild plants provide both when they grow in areas where conventional farming practices do not prevail.
Chemical fertilizers are just that, chemicals, that do not add necessary minerals and elements back into the soil. Instead their purpose is to make plants grow as big as possible.
Organic vegetables and fruits, as a rule, are smaller than conventionally farmed produce, but the organics have far more nutrients and a broader spectrum of them at that. Even still, edible wild plants are more nutritious.
Larger conventionally grown produce contains much more water than their organic counterpart. You are basically paying for more water, less nutrients, the unwanted bonus of chemical pesticides, and in some produce dangerous GMO's (Genetically Modified Organisms).
Lambs quarters, is a common weed, which grows in profusion in your garden or disturbed areas. It is far more nutritious than spinach. Yet most people pull the lambs quarter, and leave the spinach. Also, the lambs quarters taste very similar to spinach, and can be used for the same purposes in salads or as a pot green.
Sheep's sorrel is another common weed, which grows in gardens, disturbed areas or meadows. It is part of the popular natural cancer treatment Essiac. It's pleasant sour taste is especially good in salads and it has a great nutritional profile.
The same or better holds true with other edible wild plants. They have adapted to their environment, and it's this adaptation that makes them far more nutritious.
The best way to do this, is to find a local wild crafting club or forum if one exists. If not search the internet for an organization that sounds good to you.
A good link to find out what plants are edible wild plants in your area is:
From this link you can enter your state, and find common edible wild plants in your area. There are decent pictures, descriptions of where to find each plant, what part is edible, and any cautions. Tutorials, and other helpful information on edible wild plants is also found here.
An edible wild plant field guide book would be a huge benefit since you would be able to identify plants in the wild while you are amongst them. The best ones will be for your area of the country. One of the books I have is called Wild Edible Plants of Western North America by Donald R. Kirk as an example. I'm located in far Northern California.
When peak oil arrives, there will be disruptions in our food distribution systems. If you live in an area that relies on food from far away, you could find yourself and your family without. Wild plants could literally make the difference in your survival.
Some politicians are trying to convince us that climate changes are being caused by overpopulation, even though science says otherwise. Videos like Esoteric Agenda and Zeitgest try to educate the public on the root causes of global warming and the agenda of those in power.
The ancient Maya were aware of the Great cycles that cause these changes. They recorded them on their stela over 2,000 years ago. Yes, they even put a date on it ...December 21, 2012. A lot of people believe we could undergo a polar shift polar shift as part of these earth changes. The Mayan calendar shows it's a time of great spiritual as well as earth changes.
<The Greeks calls this same cycle change the end of the Age of Pisces and the beginning of the Age of Aquarius. When this change occurs, the values of the previous great cycle must end, and the new values must be adopted for the new great cycle.
No matter what the predictions, it appears we could undergo some major life and earth changes. Even if we don't, incorporating wild plant food into your diet will improve your overall health NOW. You can't lose.
Community is going to become that much more important. Incorporating the skills of crafting edible wild plants and other eco-village skills, will help your community work together if there are major disruptions in the food supply.
The only way is to educate yourself. The best time to do this is now. Get to know wild edible plants in your area. Test local wild plants to see if they agree with you, process them and incorporate them into your diet now. In this way, your body will get used to the difference from domestic plants.
Many wild plants remove heavy metals, and other unwanted chemicals from your body. In this way they can help heal your body by bringing it back into balance through their detoxing ability and by re-mineralizing.
If by chance you have not familiarized yourself with your local edible wild plants, all is not lost. There is another way you can test plants that is not fool proof, but it could save your life.
Gregory J. Davenport, author of Wilderness Living suggests you stay away from mushrooms, umbrella shaped flower clusters, bulbs resembling onions or garlic, carrot like leaves/roots, bean and pea like fruits, plants with shiny leaves or fine hairs. Unfortunately, this list also eliminates many very beneficial edible wild plants, but it will help you to avoid some very dangerous poisonous ones as well.
No one knows for sure what's going to happen in the future. Earth changes are happening, because we are all being affected by them. Peak oil is inevitable and could be imminent. Preparation is necessary so you have time to adjust to new situations.
There is a certain satisfaction that comes with familiarizing yourself with the edible wild plants in your area. Not only do you gain a closer connection with nature, you feel empowered, more self-sufficient in the event the food supply is disrupted or stopped. Wild plants add new and exciting flavors to your meals too.
Wilderness Living by Gregory J. Davenport
Field Guide to North American Edible Wild Plants by Thomas Elias and Peter Dykeman
Wild Edible Plants of Western North America by Donald Kirk
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