There are plenty of reasons to take an interest in wild edible plants, such as rounding out the camping larder, survival training or adding a little panache to the dinner table. The American northwest is home to a bountiful variety of such plants, making it a good place for foraging.
There are plenty of wild berries in the northwest: blackberries, elderberries, red and blue huckleberries and salmonberries.
Common tubers in the area are the wood sorrel tuber (which is basically a small, wild potato) and the wild carrot.
There are a variety of sources for wild greens. The young, unrolled fronds of the ostrich fern make a good substitute for asparagus; nettles can be eaten as greens after cooking or used to make soup; and common onion grass.
The roots of the sword fern and the bracken fern can be eaten, and are good sources of starch.
The damp conditions in the northwest's forests make them good places for hunting mushrooms, but mushroom identification can be tricky and making a mistake can be lethal. The two easiest mushroom varieties to identify are edible morels and Caesar's mushroom.
The pine cones of the northwest's forests can be harvested for pine nuts, although this is a tedious and time-consuming process. Wild hazelnuts, acorns, walnuts and chinquapin are easier to gather.
Article Written By Edwin Thomas
Edwin Thomas has been writing since 1997. His work has appeared in various online publications, including The Black Table, Proboxing-Fans and others. A travel blogger, editor and writer, Thomas has traveled from Argentina to Vietnam in pursuit of stories. He holds a Master of Arts in international affairs from American University.