Learn how to identify and use common weeds of eastern Pennsylvania. “Weeds” are some of the most safe, nutritious, and valuable of all plants. Join me in a seasonally changing search for weeds and wild plants such as mustard, violet, bittercress, watercress, wild ginger, chickweed, dandelion, nettle, false nettle, self-heal, burdock, milkweed, shamrock, red clover, raspberry and all cane fruits, and more. Learn how to forage for wild plants by learning about sustainable, safe and legal harvest. Please note, this is not a harvesting class unless we meet on your own or other private property with permission. The focus is on weeds because they are plentiful, useful and delicious, and they are growing in your own backyard. I discourage foraging for precious wildflowers and other wild edibles such as ramps. Populations of such plants are being devastated by irresponsible poaching.
Each walk lasts for two hours. The first part is identification: looking closely at the plants, noting how and where they grow, and taking notes and photographs. The second part is a discussion of how to use the plants for culinary, medicinal, bodycare, and other purposes. I will provide links to recipes, books, plant guides, and online resources so that we can learn about historical and contemporary uses of many plants.
This class will meet at Gring’s Mill Recreation Area in Reading, PA. We will walk slowly along Schuylkill River Trail for less than a mile. This a flat and broad semi-paved trail. Students will bring water, bug spray, and a phone camera or notebook. Masks are mandatory.