Saturday, 19 March 2011

Nettles and Wild Garlic

I'm supposed to be staying of the computer as I'm suffering a bit from RSI (sore arm from using the computer too much without the right mouse/chair/posture etc), but I can't resist making a quick post to share a few useful websites with anyone who's thinking of going off-grid this Sunday and is wondering what to do with all that wonderful spare time they'll have on their hands....

As part of my efforts to get closer to the cycles of nature I've been trying to cut out as much 'unseasonal' food as possible. Although I share and allotment with some friends and have a small garden, I can only really grow a fraction of what I need fruit & veg wise.  I'm fortunate to live in an area where I have access to local organic growers, so I'm able to tap into a ready supply of healthy, pesticide-free produce. However, as I'm also trying to reduce my dependance on the monetary system, I've been looking into ways of cutting my food bills and - apart from growing your own - the best way to do this is to add in a bit of foraged food.

I'm not going to write a whole blog on foraging as I'm only a 'beginner' but thought I'd share a couple of links to some sites I've found useful.

The first that springs to mind is written by my wonderful, weird and wacky friend Fergus Drennan. Fergus is a forager extraordinaire!  He has actually survived for over a year on very little other than foraged food, so his site is a 'must visit' -

The second site is a fantastic site all about 'nettles'.  I came across this site a few days ago when I picked my first nettles of the season and wanted to find out more about their medicinal/nutritional properties. What it's author, Simon Mitchell, doesn't know about nettles is really not worth knowing! -

There are some yummy wild food recipes here -

And finally, a link to a great little video from the gorgeous guys at Natural so you can identify Ramsons (Wild Garlic). Ramsons are extremely tasty and out in abundance now -

Whether or not you are 'Reclaiming Sundays' I hope you enjoy the above links!

B x


  1. Thanks for these useful links Brigit, there's nothing like a good forage and then eating your haul to make you feel connected and thankful to nature.
    Another really great link for foraging info is with lots of information from expert forager Robin Harford as well as courses.

  2. Thank you for this. Since I'm just starting with off-grid Sundays, I was hoping for some ideas of things to do. Thank you for the links.

  3. Great post. Also worth noting that you need to cater for long-tongued bumblebees. Different bumblebee species have different tongue lengths, so visit different flowers. On the whole, the most endangered bumblebees in the UK have long tongues. Plant red clover, honeysuckle, foxgloves and legumes (plants form pea and bean family), which have long corollas so the bees can literally stick their long tongues in them!