Edible Flowers

Whether you're taking a hike, searching for food or are curious about gourmet dining, think twice before popping just any flower into your mouth and eating it. Though there are edible flowers, there are also some that are poisonous if ingested. Eating the wrong thing can turn a good day into a terrible one. If you know what you're looking for and can identify the flower, edible flowers can be an exotic touch to a gourmet meal or could provide food if you're lost in the woods. Use these tips and information on edible flowers and what you should and shouldn't do.
Edible Flowers


Difficulty: Easy

How to:

Things You’ll Need:
  • Book on flowers
Step 1
Buy a book about the flowers in the region you will be visiting (see Resources). Education is key when it comes to dealing with unknown plants in the wild. Some plants and flowers that are edible also have a plant that's poisonous that closely resembles them. You need to be able to identify which one is the right one to eat. If you aren't sure, leave it alone and don't put it in your mouth. It's better to be hungry than poison yourself in the middle of the wilderness.
Step 2
Avoid going on information or pictures you've seen in various recipe books or magazines. Sometimes people are unaware of the dangers concerning a particular flower and will use it as a garnish. Because the flower made the picture look better, doesn't mean its OK to eat. Flowers such as the calla lily, angel trumpet, castor beans, foxglove, nightshade and daffodils are highly toxic. Some people develop an allergic reaction just by touching them. Avoid ingesting these flowers at all costs.
Step 3
Eat flowers such as bachelor buttons, roses, dandelion, hibiscus, nasturtium, sage, bee balm, chamomile, daylily, marigold, pansy, squash blossom, violet, mint, chive, lilac, calendula, hollyhock, borage and impatiens. In fact, roses, marigolds and nasturtiums all contain vitamin C. Dandelion flowers have vitamins A and C and you can also use their greens as a salad or boil them.
Step 4
Remove the pistils and stamens of the flowers you plan on eating. These are the parts of the flower that produce pollen. Some people may find by eating these pollen-producing parts, their asthma or allergies may be triggered
Step 5
Pick the flowers when the day is cool and the flowers are fully open. Due to the different soil types in various areas of the country, a flower may taste different in one region than it does somewhere else. If you don't plan on eating your flowers right away, place them in water and store in a cool place. Most flowers will last for several days being kept this way.

Article Written By Joyce Starr

Joyce Starr is a professional writer from Florida and owns a landscaping company and garden center. She has published articles about camping in Florida, lawn care and gardening and writes for a local gardening newsletter. She shares her love and knowledge of the outdoors and nature through her writing.

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