Edible Wild Plants

Preparing acorns to be a nutritious source of food

Acorns as source of food Many people are not aware that acorns are edible.  Acorns are high in protein, fiber, carbohydrates, fats, calcium, and other minerals and with tannins removed, they offer a sweetish taste making them an excellent option for use in stews and breads. The best tasting acorns come…
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General and Overview

Using plants as food in the wild – how to find, identify, test, and prepare plants for eating.

Introduction After having solved the problems of finding water, shelter, and animal food, you will have to consider the use of plants you can eat. In a survival situation you should always be on the lookout for familiar wild foods and live off the land whenever possible. You must not…
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Edible Wild Plants

Yam bean – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Yam bean (Pachyrhizus erosus) The yam bean, commonly known as Jicama (and also known as Mexican Turnip or Mexican Potato), is a climbing plant of the bean family, with alternate, three-parted leaves and a large root. They can reach a height of a few feet given suitable support and grow…
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Edible Wild Plants

Yam – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Yam (Dioscorea species) These plants are twining, tuberous vines that creep along the ground or occasionally climb trees and other structures. The woody rootstock, or tubers, is pale brown, knotty, and cylindrical in shape.  Stems are reddish-brown and can grow to over 30 feet in length.  They have broad, alternate,…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wood sorrel – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wood sorrel (Oxalis species) There are over 800 species in the Oxalis family.  Wood sorrel (also known as Woodsorrels, Yellow Sorrels, or Pink Sorrels) resembles shamrock or four-leaf clover, with a bell-shaped pink, yellow, or white flower.  The plants can grow up to 15 inches tall.  The leaves are divided…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild rose – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild rose (Rosa species) The Wild Rose shrub grows 60 centimeters to meters (24 inches to 8 feet) high. Larger stems are usually densely covered with straight prickles.  It has alternate, sharply serrated edged leaves with 3-7 oval or slightly spear-head shaped leaflets per leaf. Its oval to pear-shaped flowers…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild rice – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild rice (Zizania aquatica) Wild rice (also known as Canada Rice, Indian Rice, Marsh Oats, and Water Oats) is an tall, erect, aquatic grass that typically is 1 to meters (3 to 4 feet) in height, but may reach meters (15 feet). The leaves are flat, strap-like, about 3-4 feet…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild pistachio – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild pistachio (Pistacia species) Wild Pistachio plants can grow as shrubs or trees up to a height of 7 meters (23 feet). It branches are spreading and form a dense crown.  The bark of the Wild Pistachio is typically ashen gray in color and deeply fissured often giving the tree…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild onion and garlic – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild onion and garlic (Allium species) Allium cernuum and Allium canadense are examples of the many species of wild onions and garlics, all easily recognized by their distinctive onion-like or garlic-like odor.  Many have leaves located at the base that wither away as the flowers begin growing but the main…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild grape vine – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild grape vine (Vitis species) The wild grapevine climbs with the aid of “tendrils” on stems that are hairy when young but grow into hairless vines. Its bark is twining.  The tendrils that are used for support grow opposite the leaves.  Most grapevines produce deeply lobed leaves, alternately arranged, broad…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild gourd or luffa sponge – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild gourd or luffa sponge (Luffa aegyptiaca, Luffa cylindrica) The luffa sponge (also known as Smooth Luffa, Egyptian Luffa, or Wild Squash) is widely distributed and fairly typical of a wild squash. There are several dozen kinds of wild squashes in tropical regions. Like most squashes, the luffa is a…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild fig – how to identify figs and prepare for food

Wild fig (Ficus species) Collectively known as “fig trees” or “figs”, there are nearly 1,000 species of Ficus ranging from woody trees to shrubs and vines.  Most are of the “strangler” variety, with aerial root systems, and hence easy to identify.  The sticky seeds are spread by birds to other…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild dock and wild sorrel – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild dock and wild sorrel (Rumex crispus and Rumex acetosella) Wild dock (also known as Curly Dock, Yellow Dock, Sour Dock, and Narrow Dock) is a stout plant with most of its leaves at the base of its long stem that is commonly 15 to 30 centimeters (6 to 12…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild desert gourd or colocynth – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild desert gourd or colocynth (Citrullus colocynthis) The wild desert gourd (also known as Bitter Apple, Bitter Cucumber, Egusi, or Vine of Sodom), a member of the watermelon family, produces a to 3-meter-long (7 1/2- to 9-foot-long) ground-trailing vine with hairy, angular stems. The leaves are 3-7 lobed.  The perfectly…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild crab apple or wild apple – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild crab apple or wild apple (Malus species) Wild apple, also known as Crab Apples or Crabs, are a tree that grow to 13-39 feet tall with a dense, twiggy crown.  Wild apple varieties are much smaller than cultivated kinds; the largest kinds usually do not exceed 5 to centimeters…
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Edible Wild Plants

Wild caper – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Wild caper (Capparis aphylla) Wild Caper, also known as Kerda, Kair, Karir, Kirir, and Karril, is a small branched tree or thorny shrub that bears many thin, often tangled looking, leafless branches and grows to a height of about 15 feet.  Leaves are usually only found on young shoots and…
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Edible Wild Plants

Water plantain – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Water plantain (Alisma plantago-aquatica) The Water-plantain plant, also known as Mad-dog weed, has small, white flowers and heart-shaped leaves with pointed tips. It has a fibrous root and several long-stemmed leaves with a triangular shaped stem.  The leaves are clustered at the base of the plant.  The plant produces many…
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Edible Wild Plants

Water lily – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Water lily (Nymphaea odorata) Water Lily plants, also known as Beaver Root, are aquatic plants that are rooted in the mud from branched roots with long stems and have large, round (typically notched) leaves that float on the surface of the water.  The Water Lily’s leaves have a waxy, waterproof…
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Edible Wild Plants

Water lettuce – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Water lettuce (Ceratopteris species) Water Lettuce, also known as Water Fern or Watersprite, is an aquatic or subaquatic fern buoyed via internal air pockets in its fronds.  The soft, pale green to brown (color depends upon how much light it receives) leaves of water lettuce are much like lettuce and…
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Edible Wild Plants

Water Caltrop – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Water Caltrop (Trapa natans) The water Caltrop (also known as Water Chestnut, Buffalo Nut, Bat Nut, Devil Pod, and Singhara) is an aquatic plant that roots in the mud and has finely divided leaves that grow underwater. The Waster Chestnut stem grows 12-15 feet in length and is anchored to…
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Edible Wild Plants

Walnut – the many uses of Walnut trees in survival situations (including of course, eating the walnuts)

Walnut (Juglans species) Walnuts grow on very large trees, often reaching 18 meters (54 feet) tall, with some growing as high as 40 meters (130 feet) tall. Walnut trees often have divided (split or forked) trunks with wide-spread crowns of foliage at the top of the tree.  Walnut trees have…
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Edible Wild Plants

Tropical almond – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Tropical almond (Terminalia catappa) The Tropical Almond tree, also known as Indian Almond, Seas Almond Tree, and False Kamani, grows up to 35 meters (115 feet) tall. The tree has a smooth or grooved trunk and a symmetrical crown with horizontal branches and broad, glossy dark green leaves that are…
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Edible Wild Plants

Tree fern – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Tree fern (Various genera) Tree ferns are tall trees with long, slender trunks that often have a very rough, bark-like covering. The fronds unfold and are large and multiple-pinnate (feather like).  Large, lacy leaves uncoil from the top of the trunk.  The leaves may be covered in scales with spore…
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Edible Wild Plants

Ti – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Ti (Cordyline terminalis or Cordyline fruticosa) The ti plant (also known as Cabbage Palm, Good Luck Plant, and Palm Lily) is a woody, palm-like plant that has unbranched stems with strap-like leaves often clustered at the tip of the stem. The leaves vary in color and may be glossy green,…
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Edible Wild Plants

Thistle – edible wild plant – how to find, identify, prepare, and other uses for survival.

Thistle (Cirsium species) This plant may grow as high as meters (5 feet). It has erect stems, typically with spine-tipped wings, and greyish green leaves that are long-pointed, spear-shaped, deeply lobed, and prickly.  Disk flower heads grow at the end of the branches, on an enlarged, green spiny base, and…
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