If you found yourself lost in the woods, how long could you make it? Do you know what plants are edible and which are not? Do you know which plants can give you the nourishment and nutrition to keep walking and find your way to safety?
This scenario isn’t too far fetched. I can recall hearing several remarkable survival stories over the last year. There was one story that caught my interest just this week, where a teenage girl walked through the wilderness for two days, following a creek to find safety in a nearby town. Would you have survived that situation when you were a teenager? What about your children?
I know of one book that simplifies the art of surviving on edible wild plants better than any other. It’s called The Wild Wisdom of Weeds. Marjory gave me this book as a gift, and I can tell you first hand that the book is an awesome resource. It is written by Katrina Blair, who is an expert on wild edibles in Durango, CO. Katrina knows that there is a smorgasbord of edible plants all around us – but she also knows that most people do not have the knowledge to make use of it. To help solve this problem, she decided to create a reference that would make the world of edible weeds accessible to everyone.
Here’s how she did it. She searched through the enormous catalog of botanical writing and identified those plants that are the most nutritious and the most useful. Then she narrowed that list down to only those plants that can be easily found all over the earth, no matter where you are. The result is a collection of 13 plants that virtually guarantee survival to anyone who knows about them. These 13 plants are the heart of her book.
In The Wild Wisdom of Weeds, Katrina goes far beyond just telling you about the 13 wild plants that can feed you all over the earth. She gives a description and a history for each plant. She discusses in detail the various edible uses and medicinal uses, and she gives several recipes for each of the plants. All together the book has over 100 easy and useful recipes.
For Katrina, edible weeds aren’t just about survival – they’re about living a healthy and sustainable life, inseparably connected to the wild world around us. She talks about how these plants regenerate the earth, how they interact as companion plants, and how they are effected by the use of chemical pesticides. This is a complete resource, and it has earned praise from renowned leaders like Sandor Ellix Katz, Deborah Madison, Ben Falk, and Steve Brill.
Katrina has been learning about weeds since she was a child. In her family’s home there was a plaque on the wall with an insightful quote from Ralph Waldo Emerson: “A weed is a plant whose virtues have not yet been discovered.” That plaque instilled a lifelong interest in wild edibles. You might have caught Katrina’s great presentation during the Home Grown Food Summit earlier this spring. She gave a great presentation on wild edibles that her audience really loved. She has a dedicated following all across the country, and she regularly travels to lead groups on educational walks through the wilderness to identify and sample edible weeds. I was lucky enough to attend one of these guided tours myself this spring, right here in central Texas. Marjory, Leslie Parsons, myself, and some of our family members joined in and followed Katrina through the woods outside Bastrop, eating from the wild plants as we walked along. I learned several new wild edibles that day, and the food we prepared at the end of the day was delicious. It tasted more like fine cuisine than gritty survival food!
We are offering the book The Wild Wisdom of Weeds to members of the [Grow] Network for $29.95. This is a physical, paper-back book. As Katrina’s affiliate partner, the [Grow] Network will receive a small percentage of each sale made through this promotion.