We are well into the hungry gap now and until our perennial vegetables (well just Kale actually) are established we are supplementing our early cut and come again salad with foragings from the garden.
[In the above salad is Fat Hen, Chickweed, Sorrel, Bloody Dock, English Mace and Mizuna]
I met the lovely Wild Food Forager a few months ago and she kindly popped round one afternoon to give us an edible tour of the weeds in the back garden. I didn’t want to pop some hemlock into lunch by mistake!
I learned a lot. Thankfully I had properly identified Fat Hen and now we eat lots of it whilst waiting for the Spinach to come up.
There is also Chickweed (I’ve been pinching out the tops for our salads), Hogweed (I tried one of the young shoots – it tasted very green), Wild Sorrel, Nettles, Ground Elder (I probably won’t be eating a lot of that!), Goose grass (edible but barely!), Elderflowers, Rowan, Dogrose Blackberries and Cow Parsley.
Wildfoodforager was surprised we had no Comfrey (and so was I!) I think one of our plans for next year should be to plant some perhaps under the apple trees; like nettles, they are so valuable for our composting system.
At the moment I’m letting the Fat Hen and Chickweed grow instead of weeding it. It gets picked and eaten like any other herb/vegetable. But I think that Josh and I might have a tussle over that 😉
The nettles won’t make it near the dinner table though – they are far too valuable for the compost heap.
All this has reminded me I own Food for Free and Weeds both by Richard Mabey. Time to get reading I think!
Finally a picture of the new pigs. The previous pigs did so much digging that they actually created a wallow – they didn’t need to use it much living here in the Winter, but going into the Summer I think the new pigs are going to love it!