En EspaŅol

Q. Who is Mr. Smarty Plants?

A: There are those who suspect Wildflower Center volunteers are the culpable and capable culprits. Yet, others think staff members play some, albeit small, role. You can torture us with your plant questions, but we will never reveal the Green Guru's secret identity.

Help us grow by giving to the Plant Database Fund or by becoming a member

Did you know you can access the Native Plant Information Network with your web-enabled smartphone?

Share

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants

Ask Mr. Smarty Plants is a free service provided by the staff and volunteers at the Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center.

Search Smarty Plants
    
 
See a list of all Smarty Plants questions
Can't find the answer in our existing FAQs, submit a question to Mr. Smarty Plants.
Need help with plant identification, visit the plant identification page.
 
rate this answer
1 rating

Sunday - March 02, 2014

From: Williamsport, PA
Region: Mid-Atlantic
Topic: Edible Plants
Title: Edible plants in Lycoming County, Pennsylvania
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

Hi again! Thanks for answering my one question. I have another though. Do you know of any edible plants with no nasty side effects ( like stomach aches or being nauseous) that grow in Lycoming County forests? Also, if any plants around here are good for building shelters (like a teepee)? If you are unable to answer my second question that is okay. Thanks!!!

ANSWER:

Several years ago Mr. Smarty Plants answered a similar question about edible native plants in Pennsylvania.  You see the answer to that question here.  It contains the names of several books that cover edible plants in Pennsylvania.

You can see a very useful article Surviving in the Wild: 19 common Edible Plants from the Art of Manliness.  Several of the plants listed are not native to North America—I wouldn't recommend them—and some are native to North America but not to Pennsylvania, so I will list the ones that are known to grow in Lycoming County.

Amaranthus retroflexus (Redroot amaranth) 

Typha latifolia (Broadleaf cattail) 

Taraxacum officinale (Common dandelion)

Plantago spp.  There are several species of native Plantago, but here are the ones that occur in Lycoming County or an adjacent county.

Oxalis spp.  Here are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.

You can find another list in Edible Wild Plants in Pennsylvania from Trails.com.  Here, from that list, are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.

Nymphaea odorata (American white waterlily)

Rhus typhina (Staghorn sumac)

Pinus spp.  Here are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.

Robinia pseudoacacia (Black locust)

Vitis spp.  Here are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.  

Fragaria spp.  Here are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.

Rubus spp.  Here are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.

Prunus spp.  Here are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.

Juglans spp.  Here are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.

Carya  spp.  Here are the native ones that occur in Lycoming County or in an adjacent county.

Fagus grandifolia (American beech)

Castanea dentata (American chestnut)

Sambucus nigra ssp. canadensis (Common elderberry)

Sambucus racemosa (Red elderberry)

Matteuccia struthiopteris (Ostrich fern)

So, you see, there are lots of native edible foods available in Lycoming County.  There are probably even more to be found if you search the books listed in the answer to the question mentioned at the beginning of this answer.

Now, here is what I could find out about tipi poles. According to this article about tipis in Wikipedia, the favorite poles were Pinus contorta (Lodgepole or Beach pine) in the Northern and Central Plains and Juniperus virginiana (Eastern red cedar) in the Southern Plains.  The Lakota Society says that Chamaecyparis thyoides (Atlantic white cedar) was also used.  Juniperus virginiana (Eastern red cedar) is found in Lycoming County, but the other two are not.  You can see instructions for building a tipi from the Lakota Society and from Shelter Online.

 

More Edible Plants Questions

Possible non-native squash and gourd cross from Kyle TX
June 10, 2012 - Last year I gathered seeds from the yellow squash plants that were grown from a seed packet (hybrid, I assume). Well, now the fruit produced by those plants seems to be a cross between a yellow squash...
view the full question and answer

Vegetables for sustainable garden in Rochester NY
July 08, 2009 - I have decided to start growing a small sustainable garden. Therefore I have decided to plant mostly North American native greens and vegetables. I live in upstate New York and so the plants designed ...
view the full question and answer

Plants for floodplain in Fairfield, New Jersey
March 21, 2010 - I have an easy question for you... I hope... We just moved into the floodplains of NJ in Fairfield and are interested in some plants. We would like to know what plants are best suited to grow in flood...
view the full question and answer

Lists of edible plants in region of Pennsylvania for school project
September 12, 2006 - Please Help! I'm a grade four teacher in Philadelphia. My students and I are assigned a theme project that involves listing edible plants that grow in our region. Can you recommend a web site(s)...
view the full question and answer

Identification of a vine in El Paso, Texas
November 23, 2012 - I live in Del Rio Texas - Zone 8/9 and I have a vine which can't be identified. It looks like a morning glory white flower with crimson throat, but the leaf pattern is like a 5-7 fingered hand with d...
view the full question and answer

Smarty Plants's Facebook profile Support the Wildflower Center by Donating Online or Becoming a Member today.

Mr. Smarty Plants wants you to be his Facebook friend. Click the Facebook icon to add yourself to Mr. Smarty Plants list of friends.
E-NEWSLETTER | BECOME A MEMBER | DONATE NOW | MEDIA | SITEMAP
© 2014 Lady Bird Johnson Wildflower Center