Native plants have several advantages over other plants.
One: They are a given to grow successfully in your area with little care and often times are pest resistant.
Two: Many have herbal quality if that is an area that interests you.
Three: You can find these plants along the roads, creeks and in fields for free. Just make sure you ask who owns the property before you harvest plants.
I spent a good deal of this week foraging for native plants or abandoned plants. I harvested: yarrow, violets, three varieties of ferns, mallow, snow on the mountain, bee balm, Chinese Lanterns, Lily of the Valley and woodruff.
I have some abandoned bulbs to harvest, two kinds of ground cover to dig up and two plants to identify that I dug up. I use a Petersons Wildflower book to help me ID the plants.
When you are digging up plants:
- always leave some plants behind. That’s an American Indian policy and I believe in it. You leave some to replenish the area that you harvested from and to be kind to Mother Earth
- have an idea of what you are harvesting. It’s a good idea to know poisonous plants or invasive plants in your area
- plant the plants in the same environment you found them in
- plant your plants as soon as possible to keep them healthy and cut back on plant stress and shock. I usually have my area ready to plant so when I pick up the plants they are places immediately in their new home.
- always ask permission to harvest plants or know that the area you are removing plants from is a legal place to take plants.
Foraging for native plants is fun; rewarding and can save you money. I often rescue plants from areas that I know are going to be bulldozed or destroyed. It saves a plant and beautifies another area.
Happy plant foraging! Denise
Tags: foraging for plants, native plants have positive attributes, free plants, saving plants, identifying plants