Suburban Wild Edibles

22 Apr

I thought I would share a sampling of wild edibles from my sandy, suburban lot. This 50’x100′ piece of property has been in my family since the early 1970’s and I’ve seen the entire neighborhood transform from graceful curving sand dunes covered with sea oats and railroad vine to varying degrees of nearly decrepit suburban homes, beach bungalows, towering condos, and ever changing seasonal restaurants.

Of the three edibles pictured, only the prickly pear cactus was intentionally brought to the site by humans.  I’ve discovered other wild edibles on our site, but I thought I would show the ones I actually eat. Well, that’s only partly true. I haven’t eaten MY prickly pear cactus, but I did try someone else’s prickly pear cactus juice at the farmers market.


Wild Blackberries

Wild Onions

Wild Onions

Prickly Pear Cactus

Prickly Pear Cactus


Posted by on April 22, 2011 in Perennials & Wild Edibles


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2 responses to “Suburban Wild Edibles

  1. Tambo

    April 29, 2011 at 9:28 pm

    do you know of a good guide book for wild edibles here in NW Florida,I can’t find anything.

  2. elitrope

    May 3, 2011 at 3:50 am

    Hi Tambo, I would recommend getting several books to cross reference. Botany In a Day is an excellent source for learning plant families. Although this book isn’t particular to Florida, it’s invaluable in developing relationships with plants. Peterson Field Guide – Edible Wild Plants is good because you can search plants by color of flowers, season, location, and it gives some basics uses. Another good one is The Forager’s Harvest. Combine these with a few books about native plants of Florida and you’ll be on your way. I’ve been surprised to find so many wild edibles here in NW Florida, where at first appearances, it seems so limited. As a hard and fast rule, I never eat anything that I haven’t identified 100% with confidence, but my husband can attest that I’m always sniffing and tasting plant parts. The first plants to learn are the ones that are the most likely to induce certain death, like say…hemlock.


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