Wild Foods

Wild Onions!

We’ve got a lot of Wild Onions (Allium canadense) popping up in our pastures right now.

According to one source, there are over 100 Allium species in North America. Allium being the genus of species containing onion and garlic species. These are a number of similar appearing plants, but fortunately, any of […]

Making an Herbal Tea with Local Ingredients

All people have a specific set of taste preferences. This is a combination of genetic predispositions, culture, food and taste exposures, and likely many other factors. My oldest daughter (currently age 4) has a set of taste preferences closest to mine; we will pretty much eat anything. This will […]

Why I Love Hunting Mushrooms

The art above is Mushroom Picking, painted in 1860 by Polish painter Franciszek Kostrzewski.


1. I love to eat mushrooms!

This is a pretty common reason why people get started hunting mushrooms, and I am no different. I had little love for mushrooms as I was growing up in suburbia. The choice was Button Mushrooms […]

Eggless Elderberry Flower Fritters

So I was a little giddy when I found a number of Elderberry bushes growing on our new farm. I saw the large, white, disks of flowers from a distance. I wasn’t positive until I got closer, but sure enough. We have Elderberry growing on the farm!

I did a quick […]

Permaculture Plants: Wineberry

Common Name: Wineberry, Japanese Wineberry, Wine Raspberry
Scientific Name: Rubus phoenicolasius
Family: Rosacaceae (the Rose family)

Many people living in the eastern U.S. have seen this plant without knowing it, because it is often mistaken for the wild blackberry or raspberry plant. To be honest, people who know of Wineberry either love it or hate […]

Wild Mushroom Identification (and a project for kids!)

I want to take a few minutes to explain why identifying your local mushrooms is important. Even if you have no desire to ever eat a wild mushroom, which I think is a travesty, there is still a few good reasons to go beyond simple avoidance.

And for all you […]

Shaggy Mane Mushrooms: Wild Harvesting in the Azores!

Yesterday, I was driving in a vehicle and I spotted what I thought were some shelf mushrooms on a tree. I was not driving, so I could not slam on the brakes and screetch to a halt, as I normally would have done, to go investigate. I did note the […]

Permaculture Plants: Calendula

Common Name: Calendula, Pot Marigold
Scientific Name: Calendula officinalis
Family: Asteraceae or Compositae (the Aster, Daisy, or Sunflower family)

Calendula, or Pot Marigold, is a beautiful flower known throughout the world as an ornamental, but has been used as a medicinal plant for centuries. This annual reseeds very easily and can withstand fairly cold weather, […]

Edible Wild Mushrooms in the Azores!

(sorry for the rather bad photo… it was taken on a friend’s smartphone!)

Ever since moving to the Azores almost two years ago, I have been searching for wild edible mushrooms. All the locals I asked told me that there were only poisonous mushrooms here on this island, that there are […]

Reishi (Ling Chi) Mushroom

Common Name: Ling Chi, Reishi, Varnished Conk, Ling Zhi, Ling Chih, Mannentake
Scientific Name: Ganoderma lucidum
Family: Ganodermataceae

This shelf-fungus has a shiny (varnished) appearance, and it has been used as a medicinal mushroom in Traditional Chinese Medicine for over 2,000 years! Fruiting Body: 0.8-13.8 inches (2-35 cm) wide and 1.6-3.1 inches (4-8 cm) thick and […]