How to get to know plants-
Take some time to notice which plants you seem attracted to. Sit with them. Use your senses to get to know them. Smell them, feel them, nibble them. Notice how they look, how and where they grow, what other plants are they growing with. Is it in sun or shade? You can start a plant journal to record your experiences with the plant. Draw it. Identify it, eat it if it is edible, make medicine with it, dream with it. Visit with it in all seasons. Getting to know a plant, just like a person, takes time and attention.
Wild food resource-
Linda Runyon has great books on eating wild food. You can check out her website http://ofthefield.com/
Hibiscus makes a refreshing tea for hot days. I like to make it really strong and add mint or basil.
When making pesto with basil, add other wild greens for more nutrition. Mallow leaves, Violet leaves, young Plantain, Bishops weed, and many others are good additions.
Gather wild seeds of Lamb's Quarters, Plantain, Amaranths, Nettles, Burdock, etc. to add to your grains and flours. Ancient peoples ate seeds of many plants before there was agriculture.
Day Lily buds can be used in stir fries or soups and dried for use in the winter.
Plantain leaves make a great poultice for bites and stings. Chew up the leaf and put it on the sting. It will take away the pain and swelling.
Jewelweed tinctured makes a great poison ivy remedy. It dries it up really fast. I have had students also use it on athlete's foot and the blisters from poison Parsnip.
I love Rose. It comforts and opens the heart. You can experiment with different colored roses and see if you can feel a difference. Report back to us!
This spring some caterpillars were eating the nettles. I wondered if I would get any to harvest. The plants seem to be growing back so humans will just have a later harvest.
Skullcap was being nibbled by some kind of insect and is also coming back.
I considered doing something like spraying insecticidal soap but decided to just let it be and watch. I want my garden to be a place that welcomes all. This experience seems to be teaching me that there can be plenty for all.
I am learning about this. Will the deer leave me enough sugar snap peas?