Edible Plants in your very own yard!

It’s surprising to know how many plants out there are actually edible. It’s not just the plants in your vegetable garden that are edible. You can also eat a selection of ornamental plants, and even weeds! That’s right, you can eat some of those weeds in your backyard that are starting to drive you crazy! What better use for them than in a salad?

Here are a few ornamental plants and weeds that you may find in your very own yard:

Plant Edible part of plant Edible Use

Dandelion

Dandelion

  • All parts of the plant are edible raw including: unopened buds, seeds, leaves and roots
  • Roots can be roasted as a coffee substitute
  • Leaves can be added to a salad
  • Leaves can also be boiled down to make tea

Plantain

Plantain

  • Young leaves can be eaten raw
  • Seeds are also edible
  • Leaves are best finely chopped in a salad
  • Seeds can be dried into flour
Burdock

Burdock

 

  • Young leaves can be eaten raw
  • Old leaves should be boiled down with baking soda
  • Roots are edible
  • White pith of flower is also edible when raw
  • Young raw leaves can be made into a salad
  • Roots can be cooked into soup, made into a stir fry, mashed and fried as patties, or used as a ground for a coffee substitute

Knotweed

Knotweed

  • Plant should be cooked and eaten, not consumed raw
  • Seeds are also edible
  • Leaves can be cooked and eaten as a side dish
  • Seeds can be eaten whole, or pounded into meal

Goldenrod

Goldenrod

  • Plants should be consumed when cooked
  • Flowers can be eaten raw
  • Seeds are edible raw
  • Can be put into a salad
  • Flowers and leaves can be made into tea
False Solomon's Seal

False Solomon’s Seal

 

  • Young shoots and green parts of plants are edible, eaten when cooked
  • Berries are edible
  • Cooked greens can be eaten as side dish or in a salad
  • Berries may be eaten raw
Brittle Prickly-Pear Cactus

Brittle Prickly-Pear Cactus

 

  • Berries are edible
  • Flesh of plant can be eaten raw, after removing spines and inner seeds
  • Flesh and seeds can be dried for storage
  • Flesh and seeds can be used as a side dish

Sunflower

Sunflower

  • Sprouts are edible
  • Seeds can be eaten raw
  • Shells are edible
  • Kernels are edible
  • Seeds can be dried and eaten on their own
  • Shells can be roasted to make a coffee substitute

Always ensure that you wash the plants well before eating them, do your research, and be careful that you don’t have any allergies. It’s important to be sure that you use the proper part of the plant, since the entire plant isn’t always edible. Also be sure you know whether you can eat the plant raw, or will have to cook it.

So get out there, be adventurous, and make use of those plants!

Bon appétit!

 

Written by: Stacey Almas

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