Living in the inner city, there’s no shortage of weeds, in the street and in our garden. Thankfully not one but two books have been published to make the best of it:
- Edible Weeds and Garden Plants of Melbourne (Doris Pozzi)
- The Weed Forager’s Handbook (Adam Grubb & Annie Raser-Rowland)
The first is a self-published book covering common weeds, their identification and use. Don’t be fooled by the name: this book is applicable throughout temperate regions in Australia, including Sydney.
The second book is professionally published, and covers much the same ground, but with more pictures.
Both are truly excellent, and they make you look at “weeds” in an entirely new way. Many of the most common weed plants are edible, as salad ingredients, steamed or in stir-fries. They also have many medicinal uses.
Using the two books, these are the weeds that we identified growing in our garden, or in the food forest out the back:
- Blackberry Nightshade
- Cobbler’s Pegs
- Fat Hen
- Sow Thistle
- Sticky Weed
That’s quite a list! With the plants growing at different times throughout the year, we’re going to make an effort to make use of what’s growing wild, to supplement our garden crops.
We’re also using them to give our chickens a green feed every morning, which is probably why their yolks are so yellow!
(The fact that 80% of the weeds out the back are edible does gives pause for thought. Perhaps they were seeded deliberately at some point in the distant past?)