A lot of people are becoming interested in “urban foraging”, or just foraging; I’ve seen several articles referencing or discussing this trend across the net.
For anyone interested, there are several good, if not amazing places to begin this journey of discovery and, really, enchantment. Some great people are listed in the “Helpful Resources” tab above, but there are many, many others of course. Some have extensive online resources at the disposal of those interested, some perform physical classes in different parts of the country, and at different times, some do both. However, most folks that take the time to put together a really heart-felt and sincere attempt to educate people generally have the background, education and training to make your time worthwhile. A few, in brief, are Sam Thayer (a name not unheard of to many), “Greene Dean” of New York fame, the legend Euell Gibbons, Mark “Merriwether” Vorderbruggen, Linda Conroy-herbalist (there are many powerful women herbalists and “wild-crafters” out there; too many to list).
In response to this popularity (dare I say, trend?) several concerns, appreciatively, have been raised. Chief of which is the potential for damage to local, native environments and the general sustainability of this lifestyle. Anyone who is interested, or passionate about this way of life should have an equal, if not greater, commitment to propagating and restoring more of these resources, these wild species.
For one reason, it is extremely easy to do so. Wild plants are much hardier and tolerant, obviously, than domesticated ones; they need little to no extraneous labor or resources.
People developing an interest in finding ways to benefit from their natural environment, in its natural form, provides the impetus and the opportunity to discover real ways to live in harmony with Nature. Restoring, and utilizing, wild species of foods, doesn’t just restore a beneficial resource to people, it also restores important natural habitat for wildlife. It is this critical, positively-reinforcing relationship (between humans and their environment; their home) that provides a real, tangible connection with the greater Community of Life.