When I was a kid, I was raised to love the land.
My family would go on walks whenever we could, and mum and dad would point out all the plants you can use: cleavers, comfrey, gorse…plants that are often mislabelled as weeds, pests and useless are actually remarkably good for us. Meanwhile, plants live holly and ivy – plants we romanticise and admire – are actually toxic.
My family was always good at distinguishing between the edible and the inedible, and we always kept to the most basic rule: if you don’t know, don’t touch it.
There are some plants that are clearly edible, and they always brought excitement around the summer months. We would look forward to the changing of the seasons, and the fresh crops of blackberries, apples, cherries, cherry plums, sloes, damsons – whatever we could find! It was amazing to see just how much you can find in your local parks and woodlands, and it would become a tradition every year to make things like apple and blackberry crumble, sloe gin and cherry brandy.
It would be so easy to just reminisce for hours about the old knowledge that was passed down to us. There is so much to tell.
That’s why I’m putting it together in a book on Amazon.
I’ve taken pictures of my personal garden journal, with notes and doodles for identifying plants, and I’m putting them together in a compilation for others to use.
I hope this proves helpful to someone in these weird times.