Gardening in a pasture

Discussion in 'Back to Basics' started by RJB, May 20, 2007.

  1. RJB

    RJB Monkey+++

    I've noticed there's a few wild edibles that most grazing animals will not only avoid but actually weed around them so the plants can thrive.

    My favorites so far for taste, medicinal use and poductivity are: burdock, pokeberry, stinging nettle, and daylily.

    Burdocks have very bitter leaves that not even goats will eat. burdock produces a good size root that can be harvested from fall to early spring. One root can be a meal in itself. I love chopping them in small slivers and stirfrying them. In summer they poduce a stalk. Once you peel off the bitter, goat proof rind you have a tasty vegetable. Burdock is a very strong tonic that's supposed to promote youth, as well as being an antibiotic.

    Pokeberry (be careful with this one it is POISONOUS, but safe if prepared properly.) produces shoots that regrow faster than Asparagus and more tasty too. Cut the shoots as they are still green (purple is supposed to be the sign that poison is in them) Get two pots of water to a boil (a big and a small pot) Chop the shoots and small leaves up. Add them to the small pot of boiling water, simmer for 1 minute, strain, add the greens back to the small pot, dump half the boiling water from the large pot, simmer 1 min, strain, add to the remaining pot and simmer for 18 minutes, strain, (stirfry if you want) add garlic salt, and top with cheddar cheese.

    Stinging nettle-- cook like you would spinach or any other green. I like it because it keeps its texture. It is packed with nutrients and very high in amino acids compared to most greens, and helps with benign enlarged protate. Believe it or not, some people swear the sting helps with arthritis. Im my patch there are other greens like lambs quarter, cleavers, etc. that are protected from the animals by the nettle's sting.

    Daylilies produce a mass of small tubers. I have a patch that's 60' x 60'. There are rumors that it has toxins in it that accumulate, but there are cultures that thrive on these tasty roots. Personally I'll leave my daylily patch alone for an emergency.

    In my small farm pond, I planted arrowheads and cattails. (You should have seen the look on my uncle's face when I asked if I could dig up some of his cattails for transplanting-- He's been trying to get rid of his for years.

    These edibles literally grow like weeds and produce lots of food. But more importantly, in a SHTF situation, very few people will have any idea how much food I have.

    Any other pasture edibles or suggestions?
  2. Seacowboys

    Seacowboys Senior Member Founding Member

    I love to eat the day-lily blossoms before they flower, either raw in a salad or stir-fried in butter with a touch of garlic salt and ground pepper.
    We eat poke-weed, but mostly the leaves prepared by double-boiling. Dandelions are good too but need to be boiled twice to remove the bitterness.
  3. RJB

    RJB Monkey+++

    Ah the joys of homesteading...

    I just enjoyed a meal of pokeweed (from the pasture) mixed with six eggs from our hens, seasoned with spice from the garden, topped with cheddar cheese (from the store, no goats yet) all this washed down by sassafras tea I transplanted here.

    I need some dairy goats...

  4. crehberg

    crehberg Monkey+++

    Blackberries are plentiful around here and boy are they GOOD!!!!
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