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Edible Wild Plants and Herbs: A Pocket Guide Paperback – February 16, 2001


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Editorial Reviews

From the Back Cover

Like having a trusted guide at your side

If you can't take Alan Cvancara with you, take this book.

Ingenious, simple, and eminently practical, Edible Wild Plants and Herbs: A Ragged Mountain Press Pocket Guide is the quickest way to truly know and enjoy what's around you, whether you're in the backyard or the backcountry. Here are concise, easy-to-understand details to identify and use 50 common plants and herbs. Next to your water bottle, this book could be the most important item you pack.

Alan Cvancara, an ardent conservationist, has spent decades studying wild edible plants, and his sensible and responsible advice shows how to enjoy these useful plants while preserving their future. Here he has organized plants by season and by habitat--including forests, grasslands, deserts, tundras, freshwater shores, and seacoasts. Cvancara has carefully selected plants and herbs that are easy to identify, occur widely throughout the United States and Canada, and have more than one use. You'll learn four ways to eat yuccas and how to use them as a source of soap and needle and thread. You'll discover how rose petals work like bandages, and that cattails stuffed into boots provide wonderful insulation.

Here also are tips for finding water, vital nutrition information, and how to steer clear of common poisonous plants.

PACK IT and GO.

About the Author

Alan Cvancara, Ph.D., is professor emeritus of geology at the University of North Dakota and now resides in Wyoming. He has studied edible wild plants for more than 30 years and is the author of A Field Manual for the Amateur Geologist, Exploring Nature in Winter, At the Water's Edge, and Sleuthing Fossils.
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Product Details

  • Series: Ragged Mountain Press Pocket Guides
  • Paperback: 109 pages
  • Publisher: International Marine/Ragged Mountain Press; 1 edition (February 16, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0071368272
  • ISBN-13: 978-0071368278
  • Product Dimensions: 4.3 x 0.5 x 8.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.4 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 3.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,276,162 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

3.6 out of 5 stars
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

20 of 21 people found the following review helpful By Patchoules on September 28, 2004
Format: Paperback
This pocket guide is very informative; however, every photograph inside this book of edible wild plants and herbs is black and white. This makes identifying plants and herbs a challenge.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By rachael on March 27, 2012
Format: Kindle Edition
....and that's a rarity. The world of field guides is taking its sweet time adopting e-book technology, and most of those field guides that have been adapted for kindle are really awful, dysfunctional in terms of formatting and navigation. You'll never be reading a field guide sequentially from front to back. You need to be able to quickly flip to the relevant entry and on a kindle, that means a working table of contents, something that's bizarrely left out of many e-book field guides.

This one's good. It's easy to find your way around in, intuitive and well formatted. I've been using it a lot. I personally really like the style of grouping plants by the habitat they're found in, rather than an encyclopedia-style alphabetically ordered book. There are thousands and thousands of plant species out there; looking for edibles, it's not like you're going to walk outside and start systematically identifying every single growing thing around you until you hopefully find one that is useful. More realistically: you're on a hike in a desert, you flip to the desert chapter, familiarize yourself with the handful of easily identifiable edible desert plants, and then LOOK FOR THEM as you walk around. Excellent beginner text. Just fifty plants are covered so it's actually feasible to take in the information in this book without your eyes glazing over. Common poisonous plants and lookalikes are well covered too. I recommend.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Randell Carter on June 10, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
The book has great information on edible wild plants and herbs. The only drawback is the black and white pictures
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5 of 8 people found the following review helpful By TotalEarthGirl on March 25, 2003
Format: Paperback
This book will fit nice and neatly in any backpack. It's a must if your traveling through these areas listed in the book.
It goes through what plants or parts of trees you can eat, how to cook them, in different nature settings (woods, tundra, seashore).
It also teaches about poisonous plants and a chapter on how
to find water then purify it.
Very intesting and informational book.
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0 of 1 people found the following review helpful By BonezTheGoon on August 5, 2014
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Black and white photo's that aren't very well done. Not well written and no where near anything comprehensive. At my (currently very lazy) estimation roughly the last 20% of the book is all about POISONOUS plants instead of edible plants. I can understand naming a poisonous plant in reference to an edible one that it might be confused for, but dedicating a completely separate section of the book to poisonous plants?!?! I do not recommend this book, find a better one.
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