If you’re lost in the wild without an emergency food supply, foraging can act as a temporary solution to give you the energy and strength you need to survive as you wait for rescuers.
- Stay away from all mushrooms if you don’t know what’s poisonous and what’s not.
- Never eat anything if you’re not 100% sure of what it is.
- Be careful of where you forage (make sure you know the landscape, holes, threats, rivers, etc.).
- Stick with a few items you’re familiar with rather than spending hours searching for new plant species that might be dangerous.
- Memorize a few different types of edible plants common to your area (grasses are common enough plants to most areas, so if you get lost in the woods out of your home state, you know that grass is one plant you can count on.)
- Watch out for wild animals (bring weapons for protection).
- Let someone know where you’re going before you go out foraging.
Areas to Look for Edible Plants
Generally, in humid regions, most of your edible plants will be found in a sunny area or clearing. In drier climates, your wild plants will be found near water sources. Also, if you’re out in the woods or an unknown place, look for plants that are growing in abundance. Stay away from plants that you may only see one or two of in the area. If a plant is growing in large abundance, it is more likely to be non-toxic and edible.
Common Edible Plants
- Dandelion: Flower, leaves, stem, and root are all edible. Flowers taste best as a bud or at a barely-open stage in salads or sautéed in butter. The leaves (best young, in early spring) are highly nutritious, good in salads or stir-fry. The root (best in winter) needs to be parboiled (partially cooked in boiling water), then drained and boiled again until tender.
- Grasses: all grasses are edible, but it’s best to chew the leaves, swallow the juice, and spit out the tough fibers. Where the base of the leaves meets the root, there’s a small, white part called the corm, which can be roasted and eaten like potatoes.
- Cattails: the roots, shoots, and pollen heads are edible.
- GooseFoot: belongs to the same family as spinach, chard, and beets. The leaves of such varieties as “Lamb’s Quarters” are gathered and cooked as a vegetable. The seeds are called “quinoa,” a gluten-free grain-alternative quickly increasing in popularity as a cereal, side dish, or bread ingredient.
Avoid Deadly Plants
These are features of poisonous plants to watch out for:
- Milky or discolored sap
- Spines, fine hairs, or thorns
- Beans, bulbs, or seeds inside pods
- Bitter or soapy taste
- Dill, carrot, parsnip, or parsley-like foliage
- “Almond” scent in the woody parts and leaves
- Grain heads with pink, purplish, or black spurs
- Three-leaved growth pattern
View the complete survival guide and its 12 sections: http://www.detoxdayspa.com/survival
For those who need supplements, the Spa is open for supplement and vitamin retail, Tuesday-Saturday from noon-5 p.m. Visit https://bit.ly/3eab09k.