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Foraging

as a hobby

Foraging responsibly and discovering the world of wild food is one of the simplest and most effective ways to reconnect with nature.

Connor McGovern, National Geographic

Foraging is the act of gathering wild food for free from natural or urban environments. It can be a rewarding and enjoyable hobby that offers many benefits, such as improving your health, saving money, connecting with nature, and learning new skills. To start foraging, you need to follow some basic rules of safety and ethics, and use reliable sources of information to identify and use edible plants.

Helpful content to start foraging as a hobby

We aim to provide accurate information, but errors might be found. Always exercise judgment and discretion.

Videos

Short visual inspiration.

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YouTube | Real Street Food: Urban Foraging in Los Angeles
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YouTube | A Foraging Walk With Foraged By Fern | Foraging in Sussex
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YouTube | New to Foraging? Start Here! 5 Plants for Absolute Beginners
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YouTube | I Foraged 100% of My Food for a Month!

Podcasts

Play an episode while exploring the page.

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Spotify | WEWP#1: New Beginnings!
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Spotify | EP39: What's That Plant
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Spotify | Beginning Foraging
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Spotify | Should you be foraging for your next meal? | #369

Foraging can provide a range of health benefits, such as boosting your immune system, mood, and mental health, as well as helping you lose weight, by exposing you to fresh air, physical activity, and plant-based foods that are rich in fiber, vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants.

Terms

Basic lingo for orientation.

  • Foraging: The act of gathering wild food for free.
  • Wildcrafting: The practice of harvesting plants from their natural habitat for food or medicine.
  • Edible: A plant or part of a plant that can be eaten safely and without adverse effects.
  • Medicinal: A plant or part of a plant that has healing properties or can be used to treat certain conditions.
  • Poisonous: A plant or part of a plant that can cause harm or death if ingested or touched.
  • Look-alike: A plant that resembles another plant, especially one that is edible or medicinal, but may have different or opposite effects.
  • Identification: The process of recognizing and naming a plant based on its characteristics, such as shape, color, texture, smell, taste, etc.
  • Field guide: A book or other resource that provides information and pictures of plants and helps with identification.
  • Ethical harvesting: The practice of collecting plants in a way that respects their sustainability, ecology, and cultural significance.
  • Seasonality: The variation in availability and quality of plants throughout the year depending on their growth cycle and environmental factors.

How to start foraging as a hobby

First moves for getting acquainted and breaking the ice.

  • Begin by exploring rather than harvesting. Download apps for identifying plants and mushrooms and start discovering the nature around you, whether it’s in your garden or in the city.
  • If you prefer to learn from others, you can look for foraging events, classes, or groups near you.
  • When you feel confident enough, you can read some foraging guides online or buy a foraging book that covers your region.
  • You might also want to invest in a foraging kit that includes tools and containers for collecting wild plants and mushrooms.

Books

Get read(y).

Foraging can be a source of creativity and fun, by giving you a reason to explore new places, learn new skills, and try new recipes with your wild harvest.

How-tos

Step-by-step tutorials.

Articles

Further reading.

Websites

Go-tos for information.

Foraging can also have environmental benefits, such as reducing your carbon footprint, food waste, and packaging, by allowing you to eat locally, seasonally, and organically.

Movies

Nothing like a film for inspiration.

FAQS

Get a clue.

What is foraging?

Foraging is the act of gathering wild food for free from natural or urban environments.

Why should I forage?

Foraging can have many benefits, such as saving money, eating healthy, learning new skills, connecting with nature, and having fun.

Is foraging legal?

Foraging laws vary depending on the location, the landowner, and the type of plant. Generally, foraging is legal on public land as long as you follow the rules and regulations. Foraging on private land requires permission from the landowner. Always check the local laws before you forage.

Is foraging safe?

Foraging can be safe if you do it responsibly and carefully. Some of the safety tips include: identifying plants correctly, avoiding poisonous or contaminated ones, harvesting ethically and sustainably, washing and preparing your food properly, and being aware of your surroundings and potential hazards.

What can I forage?

You can forage a variety of wild foods, such as plants, mushrooms, berries, nuts, seeds, flowers, seaweeds, shellfish, insects, and more. However, not everything that grows in the wild is edible or tasty. You need to know what to look for, where to find it, when to harvest it, and how to use it.

How do I learn to forage?

You can learn to forage by reading books, websites, blogs, or magazines about foraging. You can also watch videos, podcasts, or documentaries that feature foraging experts or enthusiasts. However, the best way to learn is by joining a guided foraging walk or course with an experienced forager who can teach you the basics and answer your questions. You can also join a local foraging group or community where you can share tips and resources with other foragers.

Apps

Smart assistance.

Foraging can be done in various habitats and locations, such as woodland, hedgerow, seashore, and urban areas, where you can find a variety of wild foods throughout the year.

Products

Essentials to have.

Courses

Get smart.

Near You

Get together.

Foraging can connect you with nature and culture, by making you more aware of your surroundings, the seasons, and the ecology of different habitats, as well as the history and traditions of different peoples who have relied on wild foods for centuries.

Newsletters

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Tips

Additional advice for beginners.