Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Urban Forest Food?

Getzendaner park

Remember me mentioning the local park?
33 acres, corralled by the interstate to the west, a hospital to the north,
the ancient cemetery to the east and the Waxahachie Creek at the southern end.
Lots of playground equipment, picnic tables, grills and
6 miles of a concreted hiking, biking trail, dotted with exercise equipment.
Plenty of trees, birds and squirrels.
The trail is always crowded with walkers, joggers and bikers.

Funny that the walkers, joggers and bikers all have ear buds in.

Sounds great to most people, clean comfortable nature.

If you dare to venture off the concrete path
you're transported into another world......

The mini forest.

 Full of snakes, chiggers, poison ivy, bees, birds, butterflies and
 believe it or not.....Food

I speak of the alternate bike trail.
It's littered with downed tree limbs and no bike could possibly get through.
I've been on this trail before, but not in my present state of mind.
It was just a whim to even be there, no planning, it just happened.
We had no walking sticks, I was in a skirt, no hats, no insect repellant....

Nathan's always up for an adventure,
We walked the trail, climbing over and around the limbs and downed trees.

Along the way we stopped to photo all of the interesting trees, flowers, lizards....
and the food!
The vegetation was so lush and thick,
 birds were singing, butterflies were happily kissing the flowers
and the bees were busy collecting pollen.

If it wasn't for the distant sound of the interstate
you would never have known you were in an urban setting.
We found several patches of blackberries nestled under the giant trees,
walking onions hiding in plain sight alongside the grasses
and honeysuckle happily twining itself up and around the fallen limbs.
Pecan and Walnut trees were everywhere
and we even found a Mulberry tree.

Not quite ripe blackberry...


Wild onions
There's no telling what other edible plants might be hiding
in this little piece of nature, and perhaps I should look for a field guide
and educate myself.
You never know what the future might bring,
being able to identify food in nature might come in handy.

The creek was beautiful and judging by the high banks
there's been more than one heavy rainstorm that's found it's way through there.
Maybe it even has fish at times? I don't know, it was pretty shallow but
our rainfall is down so maybe at other times it's deeper.

I've found some of these same plants on our property
and probably have missed a whole lot more than I've found.

What's in your urban forest?

By the way, we didn't get chiggers, bitten by a snake or poison ivy.

Till next time,


Nancy said...

What a pretty place. It must be fun for Nathan to have a place to go exploring.

sawn48 said...

I guess all of the good smelling soaps you and Nathan make,kept them at bay.
I wish you had just a fraction of our rainfall. It has been bad the last week or so. Tornado outbreaks every day and flooding everywhere.I'm ready for a little sunshine.

Terry M Scott (AKA Terry Mann) said...

Hi Nancy- yes it's awesome. My property is pretty open so it's nice to be able to walk in the "forest" so close to home.

Hi Sue- we finally got some rain yesterday, along with tornadoes. They were all around us, thankfully we didn't get hit but people to the east did.

kim andersen said...

How beautiful. I grew up on a huge ranch and trekking out to the back forty where vegetation and critters abounded...I remember those awe-inspiring moments, alone, with nature and God.

I love how you take the time to recognize the wonders of the earth we city folks take for granted!

Leontien said...

good thing you didn't get bitten!
Loved the pics!


Terry M Scott (AKA Terry Mann) said...

Kim- I realize I know nothing about you!
I'm enjoying getting to know you.
I'm trying really hard to get into a better, calmer state of mind. Nature/God helps me be calm and nicer. The everyday world with all it's noise and traffic puts me on edge, which makes me be not so nice..

Leontien, Thanks, off to see about wedding #2.

librarianism said...

Apparently, there is a growing urban foraging movement in some places, mostly California and Oregon. But, I also found this site:

Leontien said...

Terry, the reason for the priest you'll find out tomorrow in wedding #3...