Here’s a beautiful fungus (not for foraging or eating!) and a stem of Bramble (NL: Bramen), which I saw in the park on Friday. The bramble is the mother of blackberries, which are not in the photo but are totally in season here in Amsterdam, right now. I love them, eat them straight from the bush (high up and if clean) and could take photos of them everyday but other people may get bored of seeing them, hence the fungus photo today.
Here is a photo sent to me by Youko yesterday. It’s some of the Plantain seed spikes (Plantago major) which I took over to her place when we had a lunch appointment. I think it looks really beautiful. Thanks Youko!
If you would like to send me any photos of herbs and edibles which are currently in season in town, I’d love to receive them and post some of them on the blog. I always like to see and share what other people are finding in the city but especially now as I’m away for a short time and want to keep the 365 project alive. If you have any that you think may interest others, please email them as attachments to Lynn.firstname.lastname@example.org. Thanks you!
Here is a very tasty and edible salad herb which I hardly ever use but is quite easy to find in Amsterdam and many other cities. It is called Shepherds purse (Capsella bursa-pastoris) and is well adapted to grow alongside roads, paths, grassy and waste areas. You can only really see the seed pods on the long flower stem in this photo, it is mixed in with another plant (White mustard). I found this patch alongside the Vomar entrance of Park Frankendael, right beside a path. It is very easy to identify, with it’s signature heart shaped seed pouches. The leaves quite slim and plain looking but are peppery tasting and are very good when picked young and added to a mixed salad. It has been found to be high in Vitamins C and K and has many stoic applications.
Next today is a mixture of mature (and thus not to tasty) Plantain (Plantago major) leaves and White mustard. These were growing alongside the Shepherds purse. So all in all the potential for quite a tasty salad, from this small green patch of land between the park and road.
Day 20 of the project and after going to the park expecting to see just one or two new things I was delighted to find my first Elder blossom of the season, Wild Aspraragus shoots and several other delights. Here are a few…
Above, Japanese knotweed is still fair game for Foragers looking for something a little exotic in Amsterdam. Here’s a link to my
sweet sour JKW yoghurt recipe
Next is A Geranium species in flower. Very tasty cooked or raw.
Someone got to this Asparagus before me. It makes a stunning tall feathery plant when allowed to flower. I hope that whoever harvests this one leaves some other shoots to flower and fruit unhindered.
Above is Plantago major (NL: Wegbrood, Plantain) in full effect, prior to flowering. It’s not as useful a medicinal than its slender sister Ribwort (Plantago lanceolota) but its useful and quite good eating.
I feel like a bird spotter with this one… Above is my first sighted Elder blossom of 2012 and it gets me very excited. Elderflower fritters, Elderflower champagne, Elderflower tea and a host of other flower and Elderberry recipes are not far away! This huge Elder shrub is on the Middenweg, just up from the top entrance of Frankendael and opposite the Vomar supermarket. If only my arms were long enough! Remember to harvest with respect and leave LOTS for the birds and bees. Also be very aware of Elderflower look-a-likes. Here’s a photo of Ash or Rowan in flower, growing above an Elder shrub which is not in flower. It would be an easy mistake to harvest the flowers believing them to be Elderflower, when here is nothing to compare them with.