Foraging is the act of finding and gathering or harvesting wild foods.
Foraging can mean a hike in the mountains searching for elusive morels, heading out to the local (pesticide-free!) park to pick dandelion greens, or even picking the apples from the branches of your neighbor's tree that hang over into your yard.
Foraging most commonly refers to going mushroom hunting, something only people practiced in the fine and delicate art of mushroom identification should engage in. Yet there are many edible plants that grow "wild" all around us:
- Asparagus (wild)
- Dandelion Greens
- Edible Flowers
- Edible Weeds
- Fiddlehead Ferns
Of course, foraging all depends on location. In Minnesota, one can forage for wild rice. In Florida, mangoes are foragable. In New Mexico, pine nuts grow wild. Different nuts, in fact, grow wild in different places.
Foraging can also be the gathering of free, but not wild, food from less traditional spots. Parks, abundant fruit trees (with the owners' permission, of course), and public land may not be as picturesque as the forests and meadows we may picture with the foods above, but can be just as abundant.