Why wild Edibles?

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    When I first embarked on the prepper’s journey, the problem of food post-collapse had me a bit panicky. Storing food was pretty straight forward, but you can only store so much and eventually your stock will be depleted. “Not an insurmountable problem”, I said to myself. I just have to store enough to get through a growing season or two. Hmmm…but what about looters, or government declaring martial law and confiscation and redistribution policies? Or what if you had to bug out suddenly? It would be difficult to haul two years worth of food. Then it dawned on me: wild edibles! Food that grows everywhere, food that most people today don’t know is food.

    I remembered my Sicilian grandmother going out with a big canvas tote bag on saturday mornings, returning a few hours later with all manner of weeds and such, setting about peeling, chopping, cooking, coming up with the most wonderful meals. Though much knowledge of wild edibles has been forgotten, much info is still available. I set out to learn. I sought out the reference books, the field guides, the web sites. My week end hikes suddenly had a new purpose. Little by little I learned and tasted plant after plant, incorporating my discoveries into my cooking. After a year or two I stopped worrying about food in the post-collapse future.

    Foraging is only part of the story, though. I already had alot of edible weeds in my yard. I started harvesting seeds and introducing new weeds into my yard and gardens, and in fields and woods near my home. They grow like weeds! I don’t have to go as far afield to harvest.

    My interest in wild edibles included nutritional analysis, and this led me to investigate medicinal properties of plants. I became really excited! Dandelions to lower cholesterol or cure kidney stones. Burdock root and red clover flowers to prevent cancer. Kudzu root to repair damaged liver tissue. And on and on.

    I won’t deny that pursuing wild edibles and medicinal plants involves alot of effort, and in a post-collapse situation it would require a significant commitment of time. It is also alot of fun, with the benefit of being health-enhancing and life-affirming. I no longer worry about eating, come what may.

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