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Hope you guys are out there adding native food to your local forests.

 
Posts: 30
Location: Central, TX
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Hey there,

Just got back to Puerto Rico and boy is it nice to see my guerilla garden still growing by the beach.

Met up with my neighbor Alexis, he's the best! Since I left this past summer, he's tended to the trees he planted and my plants too on the public land.

Hope you guys are out there adding native food to your local forests.

We're in this together - there's gonna be a time where only those that know how to grow food have the right amount of food....

Happy hunting season ;)

Marjory
 
steward
Posts: 5733
Location: Cache Valley, zone 4b, Irrigated, 9" rain in badlands.
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There aren't many native varieties that are useful for food in my area. I add exotics to my local forests,  like apples, apricots, pistachios, walnuts, wheat, rye, walking onions, garlic, and plums.
 
master gardener
Posts: 5811
Location: Pacific Wet Coast
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Salal is a local native plant with nutritious berries. I've got some on my land that Mother Nature planted, but I've got some in pots that I was rooting over the summer and am hoping to transplant this fall to an area that would benefit from the cover they would provide.
 
gardener
Posts: 814
Location: Durham, NC
310
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I've tossed 5 pounds of seed balls but haven't done anything more curated.
 
pollinator
Posts: 1922
Location: Big Island, Hawaii (2300' elevation, 60" avg. annual rainfall, temp range 55-80 degrees F)
844
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Aloha, Marjory! I’m a bit of a guerrilla  gardener myself. While I have planted plenty on my own 20+ acres, I’ve also planted unused plots of land around my district. But not native food plants. Being located in Hawaii, there’s not much native that is worth eating. But I have planted ...
... pineapples
... bananas
... sugar cane
... lilikoi
... pipinola (chayote)
... avocado
... sweet potato
... cholesterol spinach
... papaya
... coconuts
... breadfruit
... jackfruit

These plants can pretty much take care of themselves. I’ve notice that some people have been harvesting them, and that’s what I intended. Food for my community.
 
pollinator
Posts: 415
Location: SE Indiana
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I have a collection of grapes, I take cuttings and have planted them all up and down the road to my house and all over the state owned hunting land near me. I hope the will cross with our wild grapes and eventually make all kinds of new ones. Our area isn't known for native pecans but the grow very well here, lots of big old trees in small towns along the Ohio river. Every year I go collect them, one time I had them a foot deep in the truck bed. I plant them everywhere and discovered that if you just dump a big pile in the woods the squirrels will plant them for you. If they have more than they can eat at once they pant them and they really don't remember them all because now there are little pecan trees all over the place in my neighborhood.  I do the same with hickory and walnut but the pecans are much more numerous and easier to get in quantity.

Su Ba, several years ago, before the last big eruption of Kilauea we visited your island. Along the south coast we went to the spot where a prior eruption had closed the road that I guess used to go all the way along the coast from Hilo to Kona.

Anyway visitors to that area were asked to take coconuts out on the lava near the ocean. Home made sings asked if you make the trek across the lava to take a coconut. Our rental house south of Hilo had lots so we gathered them up and took them there. There were just cracks in the lava to stick them in, I could hardly imagine they could grow but there were some that others had planted and they were already beautiful little trees.

Can you tell from my description where I might be talking about? Do you know if there is a coconut grove there now? Are the Kapoho tide pools still there or did the most recent eruption wipe them out.

I have to say that the big island along the ocean south of Hilo is the best place I have ever visited. Our house sat on the edge of a lava cliff a few yards from the ocean the swells slamming into the cliff made a slight vibration and sounded like far distant thunder. The coconut leaves made clicking noises in the breeze. All I had to do was sit down and listen and would fall asleep.  The farm market in Hilo was astonishing in it's diversity and pricing. We filled the house with fresh orchids and the fridge and counters with all kinds of produce for not much over a hundred bucks.

Give my regards to the spirits along the saddle road.




 
 
Su Ba
pollinator
Posts: 1922
Location: Big Island, Hawaii (2300' elevation, 60" avg. annual rainfall, temp range 55-80 degrees F)
844
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Aloha, Mike

The coconut grove is still there and thriving.  I’ve been there many a time, resting amid them. The trees have grown quite a bit. There’s one tree that gre sideways before heading for the sky and it makes a wonderful bench to rest upon. It’s delightful to have a coconut grove to visit! Glad to know that you’re a part of it. That’s a marvelous legacy. ..... For those of you who don’t know where it is, it is down along the end of Chain of Craters road in the Volcanoes National Park. At one time the road connected to the Puna district, but lava flows broke the road. During that last eruption the road was bulldozed complete again, but it is only available for emergency use now as an escape road. But you can still drive down to the coconut grove.

This island has some real beauty in it. Perhaps some day it will call you back for a visit.
 
master pollinator
Posts: 310
Location: East of England
131
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I did a few years of guerilla planting and nurturing of fruit saplings in a area of wasteland along a public footpath nearby, in the edge between the meadow area the council mow and the wild scrubby part nearer the railway line. Half the trees were vandalised and destroyed, the other half were dug up and stolen once the fruit appeared and people realised they were fruit trees! Kinda discouraging the third year it happened! I may try again, with seeds this time. Scatter a few apple and pear cores, bird-chewed cherries, fallen elderberries and other fruit I know grows well here, and hope they can compete with the wind-blown sycamore seedlings that are taking over the area.
 
Su Ba
pollinator
Posts: 1922
Location: Big Island, Hawaii (2300' elevation, 60" avg. annual rainfall, temp range 55-80 degrees F)
844
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June, I invest my time but little money in my guerrilla gardening efforts. Plus I accept the fact that some stuff will die off, some will be “stolen”’, and some will be over harvested. With guerrilla gardening I know that I can’t control that stuff. So I accept that and simply move on. I’ve had to replant plenty of sweet potato, sugar cane, bananas, and breadfruit trees. At least I’m consoled in knowing that somebody now has those plants on their own land, producing food.  Since I produce my own starts, it’s no big deal. I don’t feel that I have to control every plant that I plant. That’s just my viewpoint.

One benefit that came out of my replanting efforts is that the word got out. I’m the local “Johnny Appleseed”. Now people steal less of what I plant. And they know that they can come to me for starts for their own land. For each start that I give them I require that they take two others to plant out some place else. They get enlisted in my guerrilla gardening project! So. now THEY get to dig the holes, not me. 😀
 
Posts: 41
Location: Mid Coast Maine
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Marjory Wildcraft wrote:Hey there,

Just got back to Puerto Rico and boy is it nice to see my guerilla garden still growing by the beach.

Met up with my neighbor Alexis, he's the best! Since I left this past summer, he's tended to the trees he planted and my plants too on the public land.



Hi Marjory,  I'm visiting PR and looking around for where my family and I might want to purchase a house.  I'm traveling around the island and would love to see your guerrilla garden and meet your neighbor Alexis, if possible.   I have done a lot of guerrilla gardening in NYC and LA.  Now I live in Maine, where my folks have a good sized communal garden and orchard.  I'll send you a PuMo with my contact info. All the best, Heather
 
pollinator
Posts: 278
Location: Missoula, MT
84
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My current list of native plants in my garden includes:

- Silver Buffaloberry
- Comfrey
- Currants
- Flax
- Oregon Grape
- Fireweed
- Hollyhock
- Iris
- Stinging Nettle
- White Sage
- Saskatoon
- Yarrow
- Utah Honeysuckle

...according to a quick perusal of http://montana.plant-life.org/
 
master steward
Posts: 7233
Location: USDA Zone 8a
2177
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I know that native foods can vary from state to state.

Does anyone know which foods are native to Texas?

I know we have native pecans and plums.

Any vegetables?
 
master pollinator
Posts: 267
Location: 5,000' 35.24N zone 7b Albuquerque, NM
170
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The thing I love about Anne Miller's posts is her way of posing a question that just forces the reader (me) to go researching for an answer. Thanks for keeping my brain active Anne!
I've just looked through bunches of 19th century Texas cookbooks to find some kind of indigenous veg and, sadly, nothing that wasn't imported. But here is a pretty great list of plants eaten by indigenous people of what is now TX from the American Indian Health and Diet Project site with 5 vegetables that I recognize plus unnamed "plants":

Foods of Texas Tribes
Depending on where they lived, Natives of what we now call Texas had numerous choices of plants, animals and insects. Acorns, currants, grapes, juniper berries, mulberries, pecans, persimmons, and plums grew in many locales. Atakapans and Karankawas along the coast ate bears, deer, alligators, clams, ducks, oysters, and turtles extensively. Caddos in the lush eastern area grew beans, pumpkins, squash, and sunflowers, in addition to hunting bears, deer, water fowl and occasionally buffalo. The Coahuiltecans of south Texas and northern Mexico ate agave cactus bulbs, prickly pear cactus, mesquite beans and anything else edible in hard times, including maggots. Jumanos along the Rio Grande in west Texas grew beans, corn, squash and gathered mesquite beans, screw beans and prickly pear. They consumed buffalo and cultivated crops after settling on the Brazos River, in addition to eating fish, clams, berries, pecans and prickly pear cactus. The Wichita Confederacy tribes occupied north central Texas and gardened corn, beans and squash along the many waterways. The Karankawas, especially, were viewed as being tall and strongly built. The Tonkawas of central Texas congregated near the Brazos River and were adept at making rafts. The Tonkawas consumed bison, deer, fish, turtles, crawfish, snails, oysters, pecans, acorns, wild fruits, rattlesnake, rabbit.

Taken from Devon A. Mihesuah, Recovering Our Ancestors’ Gardens: Indigenous Recipes and Guide to Diet and Fitness (University of Nebraska Press, 2005)
 
Jay Angler
master gardener
Posts: 5811
Location: Pacific Wet Coast
2319
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This can be tricky, because we're starting to learn that humans migrated to the America's much longer ago than was once thought, and they intentionally spread seeds of edible plants along the trails they followed - smart planning!

I'm in a second growth forest, and I've been surprised by how many native edible plants existed when we bought, or have moved in as we've allowed nature to do it's thing:
Red Huckleberries - I'd love to try some black ones, but I think they require a slightly different ecosystem than I've got.
Salal - I'd love to spread this further. There was a nurse-log with volunteers on it, but they didn't make it through the Heat Dome last summer.
Miner's lettuce - it self seeds and provides winter cover in many of my planters.
Doug Fir was used for tea, and I recall there are some edible parts on Cedar.

I have tried unsuccessfully to get camas growing and spreading, starting with seeds. Again, I need a better sense of what exact conditions it likes, and to be able to fulfil its needs.
 
pollinator
Posts: 156
Location: South Shore of Lake Superior
40
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My local forests are already full of native foods - maple for sugaring is the main one that comes to mind, but also several kinds of nuts, berries and other fruits, ramps and fiddleheads, roots (for flavor more than calories in most cases), mushrooms, and yummy medicinal teas. For veggies, well other than the ramps and fiddleheads, most native ones here tend to prefer a little more sun, but some can be found at the shady edge of the woods, like sochan, cow parsnip and milkweed shoots. A lot of our foods actually need to grow in the water or at the edge of the water, not in the woods.

So far, I’m not adding to my local forests, but mainly just getting to know them. These plants grow in abundance where they want to be & honestly don’t seem to need much help. But I am gathering seeds and cuttings to add them around my place, including in the woods. I prefer to grow as many (wild-type, non-cultivar) native plants as possible, through of course I do grow some other veggies and medicines.

It’s hard to imagine a place without good native food plants, other than the most extreme of climates. I guess I’m lucky to live somewhere with tons and tons of wild edibles to choose from, whether foraging or trying to grow them at home.
 
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Fermentation Intensive, San Diego, CA | Feb. 15-19, 2022
https://permies.com/t/173381/kitchen/Winter-Fermentation-Intensive-San-Diego
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