I created this project to help people identify and take advantage of the wild plants growing around their homes and in the wild.
The wild foods are healthier than anything you can buy in the supermarkets, they can be your lifeline in a crisis when food becomes scarce, they could be your medicine, or they could just be a way of life!
What I realized is that this important skill is not taught anymore. You don’t learn it in schools or on TV, and the information on the internet is many times wrong and dangerous. That is because it is written by people with no real field experience.
As a lifelong plant researcher, I dedicated my life to learn and take advantage of the plants surrounding us. I first started to study plants all the way back in 1987 when I joined the McGill University as a Biology student.
This journey led me to all the corners of the World, from the hot sun in the Kalahari desert, to the freezing wilderness of Northern Canada.
This knowledge that I gathered over the decades helped me immensely!
When I was diagnosed with MS, it was this knowledge that came to my help. I now manage my condition using mostly the plants and mushrooms near my home.
On Season 2 of the History Channel’s hit television show Alone it was plants that help me survive for 57 days in the wild, completely alone.
This is the kind of thing I wish more people knew before heading to the supermarket or the pharmacy.
Today I would like to pass on this vital skill to you!
Why pay for what you can get for free? Nature gives us everything we need for free. In forests, clearings, even in your own backyard, there are plants that you probably don’t know and could help you just like they helped me.
I think this knowledge can save many lives in the next crisis when food becomes scarce.
Sustainability is a core belief shared by the entire team of The Forager’s Guide to Wild Edibles. We don’t just provide an extensive list of wild foods in your area, but also the best way to pick these foods so that nature won’t develop a ‘’bald spot’’.
You can enjoy the bounty of nature without hurting the environment. This way you can return to the same spot to pick the same plants year after year.
Being respectful towards nature also means being respectful to the surrounding wildlife. This is one example I constantly think about when I forage berries. “One third for the bird”.
Never harvest more than you need and be sure to leave at least one third of the berries for our feathery friends.
It’s simple rules like this one that develop responsible and sustainable foraging.
But make no mistake thinking that foraging hurts nature! Many of the plants rely on animals and humans for spreading their seeds.
Animals can disperse seeds by excreting or burying them; other fruits have structures, such as hooks, that attach themselves to animals' fur.
Humans also play a role as dispensers by moving fruit to new places and discarding the inedible portions containing the seeds.
The Forager’s Guide To Wild Foodsis the result of a lifelong passion of rediscovering and researching nature. Part of my wild knowledge was passed to me by the San Bushmen tribes. I’ve lived with them for long periods of time and I've returned almost every year.
It’s only natural to give back to the amazing people that have shared their ways and wisdom with me and with the world. While these skills have disappeared almost everywhere on the planet, for them it is still a way of life.
BUT, now their way of life is under threat.
The government in Botswana are now selling the land they’ve been living on for thousands of years to private companies that want to turn a profit from it, by either cutting trees or hunting the animals to extinction on their lands. Unfortunately, the only way we can protect them is help them buy the land that they’ve been living on for thousands of years. The land is not expensive at all, but the San Bushman don’t have any money, as they don’t need that in the wild.
This is why I co-founded the Origins project, a joint venture with a community of San Bushmen to help them preserve their way of life. By purchasing The Forager’s Guide To Wild Foods you are also contributing to the Origins project, as, 5% of everything I earn from a book purchase will automatically go to the San Bushmen through this project, apart from other donations that I make to this community. Let’s help them sustain and preserve a way of life closely knit with nature, that the modern world has forgotten and is now struggling to bring back.
Eating healthy food is the best investment you can make in your body
When I was desperately trying to find ways of dealing with my affliction, my MS became so advanced it affected my whole body. This combined with the treatments I’ve received have put me in a wheelchair.
It was the wild plants that controlled my chronic illness, gave me back my movement, my energy, and my life.
Eating healthy food is the best investment you can make in your body.
Not only that, foraging your own plants will get you outdoors, improve your mental health and your blood circulation.
I wanted everyone to be able to afford it and take advantage of the plants growing around them.
Inside, you’ll discover over 400 plants that never made it to most people’s lives, kitchens or medicine cabinets.
The most important thing that I would like to show you, and that many books lack, is how to correctly identify these plants. Because I want you to be 110% safe and sure you got the right plant, I added a Poisonous-Lookalike section for each plant explaining the differences you should look for.
Want to find out more about The Forager's Guide to Wild Foods(The North American Edition)?
Click on the link below to discover just some of the plants inside this book and how you can use this field guide to take advantage of the wild plants growing in your area?