People around the world forage for wild plants, but in most of the United States, knowledge about which plants are safe, nutritious or useful for medicine hasn’t been passed down the way it is in other cultures. Rachel Goclawski aims to inspire new foraging traditions with her “Foraging at Stearns Farm” workshop on Tuesday July 12 from 6-8 pm.
Join Goclawski, a local educator and wild plant expert, on a walk around the perimeter of the farm and learn about the herbs, trees, mushrooms, and other wild plants you’ll find along the way. Goclawski will discuss foraging safety, key plant identifiers, the nutritional and medicinal value of each find, and how to prepare and preserve each edible plant.
“Most Americans are wary of eating something unfamiliar and wild for fear that it may be poisonous or unhealthy,” says Goclawski, who became interested in wild plants after she had a severe reaction to poison ivy and needed an alternative to conventional medication to treat it. “On the contrary, many wild plants help your body fight disease and contain valuable nutrients.”
What’s more, she says, many edible wild plants, such as Japanese knotweed, garlic mustard and autumn berries, are invasive. By collecting these nutritious plants, “we can help the native plant population while helping our bodies to great food.”
Goclawski suggests coming prepared to take photos and detailed notes about at least 5-10 of the dozens of edible plants she’ll cover during the walk. “Every season has different edibles ready to be harvested,” she says. “It’s a huge opportunity to enjoy nature with family and friends in a new way, and it’s a huge benefit to your palate and health.”
The program has been arranged in partnership with the Sudbury Valley Trustees. Register ($10 for Stearns Farm and SVT members, $20 non members) at http://www.svtweb.org/programs/calendar or call 978-443-5588 X123.