The Downeast Lakes Land Trust was pleased to welcome writer and forager Tom Seymour for two days of wild food gathering in the Farm Cove Community Forest. Tom began the weekend on Saturday evening with an extensive classroom overview of the edible plants available in Maine through-out the year. “Plants like cattails and milkweed can produce different food products across a year,” said Tom as he described how to harvest and prepare roots, buds, flowers and seed pods from plants that are often overlooked as roadside weeds. From “trail nibbles” eaten raw while on hikes, to daylily gumbos and recipes for stuffed milkweed pods, Tom wowed the audience with both his resourcefulness and creativity.
Sunday morning, found Tom leading a committed dozen followers armed with baskets and gathering bags into the forest conserved by the Downeast Lakes Land Trust. Before even leaving the lawns and waysides of Grand Lake Stream, participants had gathered and sampled plantain, wood sorrel, pineapple weed and orpine, Tom further pointed out plants which produce highly fragrant and nutritive teas such as hemlock, sweet fern and white pine, as well as useful non-edible plants such as soapwort.
“He was incredibly knowledgeable about not just edibles, but wild medicinal plants as well,” said Sara, a seasoned forager who joined the Sunday hike. “I learned a number of new plants that I had never used before. I’ll be looking out for them now, and encouraging them into my own garden.”
The Downeast Lakes Land Trust regularly hosts speakers, work parties, and workshops, and leads outdoor adventures that highlight the natural and cultural history of the Maine woods and waters. These programs support the DLLT’s commitment to conserving both the environmental and economic health of the Downeast Lakes region. Visit our website to discover what is happening next!