Transformational Gardening

Disclaimer: Foraging can be fun, rewarding and provide health benefits. As a novice forager, I will be sharing my foraging experiences. However, in order to be safe, always consult with local foraging experts and guidebooks before beginning foraging. Children should learn to forage safely by being guided by experienced adults. Never ingest anything unless you are certain of the identification and safety of the plant. Some plant species are inedible and some are poisonous.

June 2011 Foraging Experiences

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June 5, 2011

Bigleaf Lupine (Large-Leaved Lupine, Garden Lupine) (Lupinus polyphyllus)

Not far from the Sundial Lupine (Lupinus perennis) that I found just over a week ago, there was a large clump of Bigleaf Lupine. I was very surprised to find it here because according to the USDA Plant Database Advanced Search it is only found North in Coos County and Southwest in Cheshire County. But I found a lot of it in South Central New Hampshire (Merrimack County). Maybe it escaped from cultivation.

Notice that the number of palmately-divided leaflets can be as many as 11-17 while the Sundial Lupine will only have 7-11 leaflets. Also, notice that the leaflets are much larger and have pointier tips.



June 6, 2011

Mouse Ear Hawkweed (Hieracium pilosella)

The small height and single flower heads let me know that this is Mouse Ear Hawkweed. In addition, there are reddish stripes on the outside of the flower head petals. There is a similar plant known as Large Mouse Ear Hawkweed (Hieracium xflagellare), but that plant has two to 4 flowers heads (rarely 1) per flower stem and the blacks of the leaves are not so white wooly. The backs of these leaves are not quite as white wooly as I would have liked to confirm the identification, but everything else indicates that this is Mouse Ear Hawkweed.




June 7, 2011

Smooth Spiderwort (Bluejacket, Common Spiderwort) (Tradescantia ohiensis)

The great news is that there are only two species of the Tradescantia genus in New Hampshire. The other species is the Virginia Spiderwort (Tradescantia virginiana). Virginia Spiderwort has hairy flower stems (peduncles) and hairy sepals, while the Smooth Spiderwort has no hairs on the flower stems and only occasional hairiness on the tips of the sepals. You can see hairs on the tips of the sepals in the 2nd row of pictures.