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Hedgerow forager thread


Caravan Monster
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Caravan Monster

xD

Harvest season approaches and I found the first ripe blackberries this morning, has been a good growing year here in the English midlands. I'm hoping to get lots of blackberries and make some of my disgusting crab apple puree to freeze some sunshine for the dark winter months. Made some sloe gin last year, but didn't like it. Not got time this year but having developed a taste for the stuff must try my hand at cider making sometime as have access to plenty of apples. Cow fields are worth a look for puffballs and normally manage to find some field and parasol mushrooms, but that's about as far as my knowledge goes.

What harvests are fellow dosbods gathering?

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Shamone
3 minutes ago, Caravan Monster said:

xD

Harvest season approaches and I found the first ripe blackberries this morning, has been a good growing year here in the English midlands. I'm hoping to get lots of blackberries and make some of my disgusting crab apple puree to freeze some sunshine for the dark winter months. Made some sloe gin last year, but didn't like it. Not got time this year but having developed a taste for the stuff must try my hand at cider making sometime as have access to plenty of apples. Cow fields are worth a look for puffballs and normally manage to find some field and parasol mushrooms, but that's about as far as my knowledge goes.

What harvests are fellow dosbods gathering?

Oilseed rape then winter wheat.

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jamanda

I don't forage much now, but this time of year used to get blackberries, elderberries and rose hips for wine.  October is chestnutting time.

Hazelnuts soon, and you might find plums wild.

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Bobthebuilder

Blackberries, such a lovely fruit from such an ugly, nasty plant.

Chestnuts later are great. I pick mine up around Greenwich observatory.

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The Grey Man

The Sloes are starting to ripen! Noticed a few today.

Also time for the hedgerow elders. Jews ears. Mushrooms.

Love em and so distinctive, an easy first timer for shroom pickers.

They last untill knackered by hard cold.

Dry them. Store for ages. Old farms and elderberry trees are where to look.

And for locals to me. Mersey valley. 

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King Penda
12 hours ago, Shamone said:

Oilseed rape then winter wheat.

That’s a twat to detect on rape stubble

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reformed nice guy

Good harvest of bilberries this year. Raspberries werent so great due to the prolonged dry spell when they would have been plumping up. Looking forward to the brambles

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Shaggy ink caps are good. Don't pick regular ink caps if alcohol is consumed 48 hours before or after as they become poisonous.. 

https://www.woodlandtrust.org.uk/trees-woods-and-wildlife/fungi-and-lichens/common-inkcap/

Ground elder is also eminently edible. Originally deliberately sown by the Romans on roadsides so the soldiers could snack when they were marching.

https://www.foodforest.garden/2013/05/26/growing-and-eating-ground-elder/

 

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Don't overlook nettles. There are two points of the year when you can harvest them, early spring and late summer ie now. Just make sure it's a young plant with no flowers and only 3-5 sets of leaves. You ideally want to pick them with 3 or less. Just pick off the leaves - use gloves obviously - and it makes a free alternative to spinach. After ~10s in boiling water the sting has gone. Or just fry them etc as you would with spinach, add to stir fry etc etc.

People look at you weird, so do it somewhere private if that bothers you.

Not really hedgerows but I also eat vine leaves starting this time of year, if you know someone with a grapevine ask for a few handfuls, they're very healthy and you can make dolmades.

https://www.bbc.co.uk/food/recipes/dolmades_72399

 

If you live in Kent /Sussex you can also find plenty of wild hops that have 'gone rogue' in the hedgerows. I pick them starting from early September and put some around my house. Same with walnuts - you can pickle them . But I don't think you find them further north than Brum but could be wrong.

Edited by spunko
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King Penda

Badgers are quite often found in hedgerows free protein don’t let a little thing like tb bother you

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6 minutes ago, King Penda said:

Badgers are quite often found in hedgerows free protein don’t let a little thing like tb bother you

There's plenty of dead rabbits in my garden. I'm finding about one a week, think there's a new disease going round. Not sure I'd eat them though, who knows if the thing can mutate :Old:

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Van Lady
9 hours ago, spunko said:

If you live in Kent /Sussex you can also find plenty of wild hops that have 'gone rogue' in the hedgerows

When I lived at a coastal village in south west scotland I planted hop seeds. I must have bought them from a catalogue because I’m very sure it was (my) pre internet days. Mailshot times! I often bought seeds from major suppliers but I vaguely recall this was a more independent supplier.

It was a long garden and divided by a wall and wooden arch/gate leading to the veg and flower growing garden.

Those hops were stunning! I didn’t do anything other than sow the seeds, water etc 

Then eventually I trained them over the arch. Outstanding and surprising how they grew in my neck of the woods. I liked drying them for the house….on top of my kitchen cupboards.

I’ve been equally surprised and impressed about how well another non native plant fares in Dumfries & Galloway.

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The Grey Man

The recent trip to the the far NW of Wales, I noted the hedgerow blackberries. They looked marvellous. However, noted they had a pink tinge to the flowers. 

So I took a pic. Never noticed before.

Here in the NW of England they are always white flowers.

Not sure if the fruit taste different.

 

20210731_183044.jpg

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In the dunes in my area there's a plant I'm struggling to identify...

Leaves - Identical to Blackberry leaves.

Stems - Similar to Blackberry but much thinner and less vigorous, never grows more than about 2mm thick and remains a ground creeper rather than forming thickets.

Berries - Same multilobed structure as Blackberries but more the dusty blue colour of Blueberries or Bilberries, and more fragile than Blackberries, they usually fall apart in your fingers when you try picking one.

There are thick patches of 'proper' Blackberry bushes growing 4 or 5 feet high in places in the same dunes so proper Blackberries can grow here so I can't figure what these other plants are.

Are they just a weaker, less vigorous variety of Blackberry or something different altogether?

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15 minutes ago, jamanda said:

They might be dewberries

There are loads of these hybrids, some natural some not. Tayberries, loganberries, then you've got Boysenberry, youngberries etc. Then you've got all the crazy American ones like Kotataberry, Marianberry, Ollionoberry (or something like that?). Really hard to identify tbh.

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Plus you can also get black raspberries :S

PS: have you tried jostaberry? I was gifted some jostaberry jam on my birthday, it's a cross between a blackcurrant and gooseberry. Very nice!

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Stinky Wizzleteats
On 09/08/2021 at 11:57, spunko said:

Don't overlook nettles. There are two points of the year when you can harvest them, early spring and late summer ie now. Just make sure it's a young plant with no flowers and only 3-5 sets of leaves. You ideally want to pick them with 3 or less. Just pick off the leaves - use gloves obviously - and it makes a free alternative to spinach. After ~10s in boiling water the sting has gone. Or just fry them etc as you would with spinach, add to stir fry etc etc.

I made nettle pesto last year, it was excellent

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It's worth familiarising yourself with these 10 plants. Some are probably quite well known, but hemlock (looks like wild celery) was a bit of a surprise to me.. 

 

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I’m currently staying in Moray.   Every morning I go out and pick chanterelles.  It is so therapeutic.  They are the only wild mushroom I would dare to pick although there are loads of other types growing in the woods here.   
 

Local restaurants are paying £20 a kilo for chanterelles so I have to be up early as there is quite a lot of competition from professional pickers.   
 

I am about to follow @spunko’s advice and pick a few nettles.

Also there is beautiful wild heather and mini Xmas trees that I will dig up and transport home which will save me a bomb at the garden centre.

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3 hours ago, Ina said:

pick a few nettles

come and have mine lol

stopped on bike ride earlier for a p and grabbed a few blackberries off the bushes, bit small at mo, will forage more over weekend :)

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3 hours ago, nirvana said:

come and have mine lol

stopped on bike ride earlier for a p and grabbed a few blackberries off the bushes, bit small at mo, will forage more over weekend :)

There are stacks of wild raspberries here too.  Totally different from supermarket ones as they are tiny and full of pips.

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10 hours ago, Chewing Grass said:

What's left of the pocketful of Golden Plums I came across yesterday

I grow them in my garden! We call em mirabelles

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