View Full Version : Late late late winter or Early early early spring wild edibles?

03-18-2010, 12:00 AM
1) What do you gather/ hunt, fish?

2) What parts do you eat?

3) How do you prepare it?

4) What time of year is it?

5) What general part of the world are you gathering it in?

This includes any wild edible; plant, tree, animal, fish, bug, etc. If you get it from the wild and swallow it... it counts! :) Even if it's for medicinal purposes, etc. Any purpose counts! But, you must actually get it yourself.

I'm not interested in what can be gathered, or what someone else gathered, but what you, yourself have actually gathered, hunted, trapped or fished in this seasonal time frame and you yourself consumed.

I realize folks on this forum are from around the world, so that's what # 4 and 5 are for. Maybe your spring is in October or maybe you don't even have a spring or winter per se, I don't know! But, it'd be nice to have an idea of your geographic location and time frame as it relates to late winter or spring if possible.

My hunting and hardwater fishing season is over, and my open water fishing season is just getting started. So, ...

1) I gathered some chives.

2) greens only

3) and prepared them by wiping em off and eating them in the field while I checked on some maples for sap.

4) Mid March

5) 42nd parallel North, 950 ft. ASL, open woods near edges.

I wanted to gather some evening primrose root, for ID, but haven't seen any first year rosettes, just old dead stalks from the second year plants.

03-18-2010, 07:52 AM
Don't forget about the Edibles and Wild Plants database.


03-18-2010, 12:26 PM
Where I live in the mountains the only readily available wild food plants this time of year that taste any good at all are Chickweed (tender leaves especially, but the whole young plant is good this time of year), Wild Rose Hips (just the hips), and Wild Onion (the whole plant).

Certain roots can still be found this time of year (like Burdock), and you can eat the inner bark of certain trees (certain Pines, slippery elm), but I wouldn't do these things unless I had to because they are more difficult to obtain, more difficult to prepare, and don't taste as good.

03-18-2010, 03:13 PM
I think taste is a relative term. Many people don't like bitter greens and will blanch them before storing. (just an example) I really like my greens to be bitter and spicy. It really depends on what you get used to I guess. Maybe that's why Mustards are my favorite. Spicy and bitter with no condiments!

I guess I'll have a go, although it's nothing impressive.

1) What do you gather/ hunt, fish?
Field Mustards are literally EVERYWHERE, expecially in the off-growing season, fall and winter months after corn, cotton, and peanut harvests.

2) What parts do you eat?
young seedpods make a delicious snack, I've also eaten the leaves as you would any other potherb.

3) How do you prepare it?
seedpods are delicious and spicy right off the plant. I like to cook the leaves with a little neckbone or hog jowl, but they taste just fine without all that extra stuff too, If you like bitter-sweet greens. and they are already spicy!

4) What time of year is it?
October through May. They really seem to grow here all year long.

5) What general part of the world are you gathering it in?
USA, Southeaster Coastal Flood Plains, below the fall line, in the Lower Chattahoochee valley. Usually in open areas with plenty of sun and poor damp soils.

Hopefully this is the kind of info you were looking for.

03-18-2010, 09:02 PM
Yes it is and thanks both of you. I'm just curious what people gather or hunt in the off season really. This is the time frame where I'm kind of in between everything and there's not a lot to go after.

I usually go after the crappies and walleyes about now and haven't really harvested any roots. I'm looking forward to the cattail shoots and fresh greens. Some are springing up already but I don't know what they are.

03-18-2010, 09:20 PM
there are so many spring flowers out there and I just can't ID them all. I also like to make sure I KNOW the plant, like I can recognize it at a glance as easily as field mustards or muscadines before I eat any.

Hunting season is out except for Turkey, usually this time of year I go after white and striped bass and hybrids. they run, as the old folks say, when the dogwoods bloom. dip-net for crawdads in the water-filled ditches, drag one across a sandy bottom and when you feel a hit, yank! It's my favorite fish.
prepare fresh with cornmeal salt and pepper to taste, the meal sticks better if the meat is wetted. Deep fry.
Or you can just scale, gut and de-head them and toss them on a well seasoned rock heated by a campfire. Just as delicious without all the extra fixin's to me. If the rock isn't well used, you'll wanna add something greasy as the fish cooks or it will stick.

03-18-2010, 09:55 PM
Don't forget about the Edibles and Wild Plants database.


That is an outstanding link rick. Thank!

03-18-2010, 10:41 PM
Well it should be. It's part of the forum. Everything and everyone is outstanding. The only place that could possibly be better is Free Traxistan (God bless them little pygmies and Nora).

03-19-2010, 10:06 AM
1. Winter fishery is open until the 31st. Trout for me, pickerel for the dogs.
2. Sap collecting until the buds swell. The squirrels chew holes in the lines and i get to walk in the woods all day repairing them. Sweet job.
3. Labrador Tea. There’s a buyer who is paying $38.00 per kilo. The wife and i spend time at that.
4. Fiddle Heads are going to be early, we’re coming off the mildest winter in the last 40 years. Most will be blanched and frozen.
All from a 10 sq.mile area in central Nova Scotia

04-01-2010, 11:37 AM
Late May and early June we hunt black bear, we eat all the red meat and the heart. All the bones are cut up and made into broth along with the tendons & ligaments then canned for later use. That same time of the year we gather buckets of fiddleheads some are eaten fresh others are dried or pickled for winter. Spring is when the wild chives starting out we gather them to make vinegar, some for salads, and my favorite chive fritters. In late May we start tapping birch for sap to drink, very high in minerals. Other local greens that time of the are wild geraniums, watermelon berry, chickweed, lambs quarter. We hunt and gather all of these each spring. One of my favorite meals is bear steak with wild salad greens, steamed fiddleheads, and chive fritters.

04-01-2010, 09:31 PM
Great info everyone. Thanks!