Herbal Medicine, Consulting Medical Herbalist, Jesper Launder BSc (Hons) Herbal Medicine, MNIMH |

Great colours - and all edible!

Wild Food

In the United Kingdom We are gifted with a considerable array of plants and fungi that have the potential to make delicious wild foods. In fact once you get to know what is and what isn't edible, there really isn't much excuse for passing up on this great free food, especially since many wild foods are as good if not better in taste than the foods we buy in supermarkets. What could be better than having a weekend stroll in the countryside and coming home at the end of the day with a basket laden with wild salad leaves with tastes like aniseed, garlic and mustard, springtime shoots for eating like asparagus, and maybe even a collection of delicious wild mushrooms if you've been lucky.

Obviously identification is of utmost importance, and common sense dictates that you should never eat any wild food unless 100% certain what it is. With green plants there are a number of potentially deadly errors that can be made, for example, mistaking Cow Parsley leaves for young leaves of the deadly Hemlock, or the edible Comfrey being mistaken for the decidedly poisonous leaves of Foxglove.

Harvesting your own foods from the wild does come with risks, however, these can be minimised by learning about local wild food with an expert who can help you to distinguish edible plants from poisonous look-alikes.

Jesper Launder has been collecting plants and mushrooms from the wild for use as foods for more than 25 years and has been sharing has knowledge with the public on wild food and herbal medicine walks for more than five years. For details of upcoming walks see EVENTS.