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
Not Yet Rated

Monday - July 29, 2013

From: New York, NY
Region: Northeast
Topic: Edible Plants
Title: Edible native plants in New York
Answered by: Nan Hampton

QUESTION:

In your plant database- which is great by the way- it does not say whether or not the plant is edible. Do you have any way to search for edible plants? Or do you have a separate database? Thanks!

ANSWER:

Thank you for the compliment!

Our Native Plant Database will occasionally mention that a plant has edible fruit [e.g., Prunus americana (American plum)], but we don't have a means to search our database for plants that are edible.  However, I can guide you to other resources for identifying edible wild plants in New York.  First, let me refer you to the webpage of "Wildman" Steve Brill.  He does foraging tours and field trips in and around New York City.  He also has a list of Wild Plants with information about identifying them as well as recipes using the plants.  Not all of the plants he lists are native, but most are and they all can be found wild.  The Foraging Pictures site has photos of most of the plants discussed by Brill.

Brandeis University has A Guide to Edible Plants and Fungi of New England where you can search by name, by use or by growth type.

Also, check out the Urban Forager from the New York Times for articles about edible wild plants.

You can search in our Native Plant Bibliography for books on edible plants that you can potentially purchase at a bookstore. You can also find a host of books by searching "edible wild plants" on Barnes & Noble or Amazon or visit your local book store to see what they might have in stock for your area.

Finally, searching the internet for "foraging New York" or "wild edible plants New York" will give you still more leads.

 

 

More Edible Plants Questions

Will a chile pequin survive winters in Garden City, Kansas
March 24, 2010 - Dear Mr. Smarty Pants, I am trying to determine if a chile pequin (Capsicum annuum) can survive Kansas winters. My sister lives in Killeen, TX, and has a couple of these bushes in her yard. She broug...
view the full question and answer

Edible wild plants in Montana
September 30, 2005 - Where can I find information about wild edible plants in Montana?
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

List of plants native to the Abilene, Texas area
September 15, 2011 - Am looking for direction to a complete list of plants native to the Abilene, Taylor County, Texas area (trees, shrubs, grasses, cacti and other plants that grew here before cultivation, eradication or...
view the full question and answer

Food and medicinal value of Parsley Hawthorn
March 01, 2013 - I have found several sites that talk about how the parsley hawthorn is edible and how the hawthorn berry in general is really great for the heart, but I did not find any mention of this on your info a...
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