Gathering native herbs and plants in the wild yields unexpected today when I stumbled upon a spotted fawn in the tall grass and a nest of red-winged blackbirds in the neighboring stone row.  My afternoon meadow excursion included a basket full of alfalfa and clover tops for medicinal teas and a gorgeous bouquet of lime-green curly dock plumes for the dinner table.

I have always found collecting wild herbs and berries to be an enjoyable form of exercise.  Observing the earth's seasonal changes is relaxing and meditative, while the act of gathering, allows the mind to de-program and let time drift away from normal routine.  To lose yourself in a creative endeavor is a luxury we seldom allow ourselves as adults, and learning to wildcraft for teas, medicines, and berries is a way to reclaim your self-sufficiency.  The world becomes an infinitely more intriguing place (with endless discoveries) once you have mastered the art of identifying useful herbs and flora.  Here are five tips to get you started wildcrafting:


Know what you are picking when gathering wild herbs.

Use & Carry a field guide to research plant identity immediately.

Keep a separate collection bag for each plant type.

Be aware of contaminants and chemical sprays that surround the area you are picking.

Leave plenty of seed-producing plants to generate future harvests.

Mother nature provides plenty for those who are willing to 

learn her ways and become wise.