Edible plants of the temperate zone

In addition to the barren desert, you can always find plenty of edible and nutritious plants in your immediate surroundings. However, you need to learn to distinguish between edible and poisonous plants, that could cause disease. However, some edible plants have small ones, stinging hair, which irritate the mouth and throat, be poisonous seeds too. There are also plants that can only be eaten at certain times of the growing cycle. Others still, though edible, they are nutritious enough, that we use more calories to harvest them, than we gain by eating them.


Avoid eating old shoots and roots, which can be stringy and hard, with an unpleasant taste. Young shoots and plants are much better and usually more nutritious than the old ones, besides, they can often be eaten without cooking. The same goes for the leaves. Always choose the young, green leaves, tearing them off completely from the stem. Here are some temperate food plants.

Sea blueberry (Crambe)
Also called sea cabbage, grows on the coasts. It has thick leaves and an underground stem, that you can cook and eat. The plant tastes like cabbage.

Sedum (Sedum)
It grows on scales, walls and roofs of houses. The plant has a sharp feel, peppery taste. Its leaves can be eaten raw as a salad or boiled and added to soups.

Rdest (Polygonum)
This plant is found almost all over Europe, and related species are found in North America. It grows in meadows and forest clearings, reaches a height of up to 60 cm. It is easy to recognize by its oblong shape, different inflorescences. Leaves and shoots can be boiled. Roasted roots are also edible, but must first be soaked in water.

Bitterness (Barbarea)
It occurs in Europe, North America and New Zealand. Its leaves can be eaten raw or cooked.

Purslane (Purslane)
It grows in coastal swamps flooded with salt sea water below the tide line. The leaves can be plucked and harvested at any time of the year. They are simmered on a slow fire, and then eats it with the addition of lemon juice. The purslane cannot be the basis of nutrition. Eating only one type of food can lead to malnutrition.

The ground elder (Alopecuroides)
This herbaceous plant can be found in many regions of Europe and Asia. Young leaves and their petioles taste best, when the shoots are approx 15 cm in length.

Seaweed, such as Porphyria, you can cook, bake or dry. They also produce a kind of gelatin, which is suitable for making desserts. Dandelion leaves, popularly known as dandelion (Taraxacum), can be used instead of spinach, just like the leaves of wild sorrel (Rumex). Wild garlic, for example wild garlic (Garlic), it is the perfect spice.