Archive | June, 2020

Trout lily green seed pods

10 Jun

Nibbled these green seed pods a few times over the years. Trout lily (Erythronium americanum) covers large areas of mature beech, maple hardwood forest here in the Martime provinces of Canada.

Most parts of the Erythronium americanum plant are listed as edible with the plant’s tiny bulbs considered by many to be the best for eating. The leaves and flowers are also edible though this plant comes with a warning that it can be emetic if eaten in large quantities. I find Trout lily beautiful while in flower, but today I notice it is also quite captivating while in this green seed pod stage.

My search for info on the historical use of Erythronium americanum’s green seed pods has come up empty, though I also looked for other members of Erythronium which has several in NA and Asia and it appear one out in Western Canada Erythronium grandiflorum known as the Avalanche lily has some record of food usage of the green seed pods. This was encouraging news as these pods seem like a nice way to harvest without too much negative impact on these plants.

Another photo of these beauties in a pleasant woods, very soon in this location there will be little trace of this plant as it is well known as a spring ephemeral. As for the green seed pods edibility I did consult the most knowledgeable wild food expert I know of and they agreed this is most likely  a safe part of this plant to consume in small amounts.

Here we see an ant’s eye view of a seedpod towering above. Although the main way trout lily spread in a forest is by runners, ants do help also when the seed pods breakdown on the ground surface, ants then have a tasty nutritious meal attached to the seed and with a natural appreciation plant some seeds during their picnic.

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Canadian Wood Nettle

3 Jun

Out on the flood plain gathering some Laportea canadensis (Canadian wood nettle) as you can see in the basket with these scattered plants of wood nettles, are some tiny sprouting jewelweed and a few beginning strings of groundnuts and then your eyes will reach the green line of no longer fiddlehead stage ostrich ferns. Lots of energetic plants a glow here today.

Closer look at Canadian wood nettle.

Back at home and in the pot are the young solid stems of the wood nettles which are a healthy & tasty food. I should mention at this time you can actually snap the tender stems of (YOUNG) Canadian wood nettle with your bare hands without receiving any nasty stings but quite soon that will all change so beware if you’re out there.The wood nettle leaves I gathered were boiled separately and after dried and powder and will later be used as flour or added to soups, smoothies, etc