A Foraging Guide for Writers

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In a wilderness survival situation, the chances of you always having a successful hunt is slim. Like it or not, some days you would likely not have an meat. So what is your character to do?

Or, what if your character is on the run and is injured? How would they keep infection away?

Well, the very plant-life around them could just save your characters life.

I decided to make this quick guide just in case any of you writers out there want to add any real plants to your writing.

The website these will click-to for more information is also mine(I was an wilderness survival nerd in Air Cadets), so if you have any wilderness survival questions, please feel free to ask!

Foraging Basics:

MEDICINE:

  • Meadowsweet: Pain-relief. It can also help with upset stomachs. Make a tea from the roots to help with aches and pains.
  • Willow Bark: Pain-relief. The white willow has the most natural pain-relief out of the willow plants. Take the bark of the tree and make it into tea. When it is done steeping, it will look red; almost like blood.
  • Honey: Burn Relief. Great for healing burns and wounds. It will help keep the injury from getting infected, and also speeds up the healing.
  • Old Mans Beard: Infection Prevention. Simply put over the wound like a bandage.
  • Juniper Berries: Upset Stomach Relief. Steep the berries, or eat them. They are very bitter. Can be eaten as food.
  • Clover: Sickness Relief. Good for sore throats, coughs, upset stomach. Can also be used for skin ailments, and eaten as food.
  • Yarrow: Stopping Bleeding. Yarrow can save your life. If put onto a wound, it will help slow the bleeding and could stop you from bleeding out.

FOOD:

  • Cattails: Peeled roots, leaves, and stem can be eaten. The head can be eaten like corn, and pollen can be used as a flour substitute.
  • Evergreens: The needles can be chewed like gum, or steeped in tea. The inner-bark of the tree can also be eaten.
  • Roses. Roses are actually in the apple family, and all types of roses are edible. You can eat the rose-hips and the rose flower. Rose-hips are very bitter, and are better if you can wait until after the first frost(sweetens them slightly).
  • Dandelion: The whole plant is edible. This plant is know to many as “natures multivitamin.”
  • Fireweed: Edible, but bitter and they get worse as the plant ages. Boil twice to help cut down on the bitter taste. Eat like spinach.
  • Bunch-berries: The berries can be eaten raw, or as preferred. These taste fine, but have more seed to them than berry.
  • Strawberries: Everyone will likely know that strawberries are edible, but not all of you will likely know what the wild variety looks like. Wild strawberries are smaller and sweeter than our store-bought kind. The leaves can also be made into a tea for a drink high in vitamin C.

Do not use this guide for anything more than writing…in other words, do not go out and eat random plants.

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