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Identifying and Harvesting Edible and Medicinal Plants in Wild (and Not So Wild) Places Paperback – May 20, 1994
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From the Back Cover
Identifying and Harvesting Edible and Medicinal Plants in Wild (and Not So Wild) Places shows readers how to find and prepare more than five hundred different plants for nutrition and better health. It includes information on common plants such as mullein (a tea made from the leaves and flowers suppresses a cough), stinging nettle (steam the leaves and you have a tasty dish rich in iron), cattail (cooked stalks taste similar to corn and are rich in protein), and wild apricots (an infusion made with the leaves is good for stomach aches and disgestive disorders).
More than 260 detailed line drawings help readers identify a wide range of plants -- many of which are suited for cooking by following the more than thirty recipes included in this book. There are literally hundreds of plants readily available underfoot waiting to be harvested and used either as food or as a potential therapeutic. This book is both a field guide to nature's bounty and a source of intriguing information about the plants that surround us.
About the Author
Naturalist-Author "Wildman" Steve Brill has been leading public foraging tours in parks throughout the greater New York area since 1982. He works with schools, day camps, environmental organizations, museums, parks departments, nature centers, scouts, garden clubs, and educational farms, from March to December.
His Identifying and Harvesting Edible and Medicinal Plants in Wild (and Not-So-Wild) Places (HarperCollins Publishers, 1994) is considered a classic on the subject.His innovative Wild Vegan Cookbook (Harvard Common Press, 2002) is changing the way people think of preparing gourmet food. His Shoots and Greens of Early Spring in Northeastern North America (self-published, 1986 and 2008) teaches people how the foraging season begins, and his Foraging With the Wildman DVD series, along with the website he created, is showing people how it's all done. But he's still best known for having been handcuffed and arrested by undercover New York City park rangers for eating a dandelion in Central Park!
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Top customer reviews
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I purchased this book to learn about wilderness survival and edible plants, I did learn some things, and some very easy to identify plants I found out are very usefull, but I am guessing I could have found all that on the web instead of buying the book. The illustrations, at least to me, are terrible. I still think a picture is worth a thousand words, but not a drawing.
The argument the book makes about photographs versus hand drawings is that it is easier to portray a plant in all of its stages in a drawing and easier to put in detail.
The Pros of the Book: Good descriptions. Very informative and useful information to the: forager, survivalist, and for those who wish to expand their diets and improve their health. Steve is the real deal. Not some guy who parrots (you know the people who read about the plant somewhere and parrot another author without having any experience themselves) other people. Steve speaks from experience and research. This is the kind of person you want to learn from, because there are a lot of wild food books that are inaccurate. Steve is very careful and accurate in what he tells you.
The Cons: Steve designed the book by season. I can't get used to it, and don't really like that format. My preference. Steve also uses line drawings (which are good) but I find color photos are far superior. Both Samuel Thayer and John Kallas have fantastic color photos in their books, and I find both Thayers and Kallas books to be superior to the beginning and intermediate forager for that reason. Mr. Brill's app that he has for android and i phone has really good color photographs. If you have any form of smart phone I would highly suggest supplementing this book with that app. I know there are some out there that prefer line drawings to photos. I'm not one of them.
Conclusion: This book is worthy of 5 stars. There are a few books out there on foraging that I like better, but not many. If your going to have a wild food library this book should be on your must own list. I would put it right behind books by John Kallas, and Samuel Thayer. It is hard for me to put it above Euell Gibbons but to the beginning forager this book is probably a better place to start than Gibbons. For that reason my personal first purchases would be by authors: John Kallas, Samuel Thayer, Steve Brill, and then Euell Gibbons. In that order.
Good for knowing edible and medicinal plants. Just had to purchase an additional book with plant pictures in color.