Foraging for plants: Native Plants add Beauty and save you Money

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

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2 responses to “Foraging for plants: Native Plants add Beauty and save you Money”

  1. Cricket Harris

    What sort of plants are most common or what do you recommend for a beginner? I want to get started with foraging for native plants such as perennials / shrubs and flowers. Thanks for a great post!

  2. Denise

    Violets, lillies, red and purple beebalm, daisies and wild herbs are easy and fun th start out with. They can be found along roadways. If you have permission you can go to to old abandoned houses and can find many plants at houses that they are going to tear down.

    I would recommend “Petersons Wildflower Book.” It helps you ID plants. This will help you know when they flower and to help you make sure you don’ get an invasive plant that is more work than pleasure. Denise

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