Wildcrafting: An Age-Old Practice Gaining Popularity!


woman in forest 

Wildcrafting simply means harvesting wild plants in their natural habitats. While harvesting wild plants for food and medicine has transpired since there have been people on earth, it fell out of favor during the mid-20th century, as common health practices gave way to relatively inexpensive modern medical conveniences of over the counter pharmaceuticals and easily accessible doctor visits.

In the 1970s, the back-to-the-land movement presented a culture of folks who brought back the old and, seemingly, more healthy ways; however, this was not the mainstream. For decades, herbal medicine has been counter culture. In the advent of today’s social media and its far reach, it’s become “boho” to wild harvest plants for medicine. With the rising popularity of herbal medicine, wildcrafting has come to the forefront of social consciousness.

With that new popularity, there has been a resurgence of folks foraging plants for home use, small herbal businesses, and commercial trades. To harvest sustainably and with clarity of purpose, it is important to know some valuable rules.

Wildcrafting is about harvesting wild plants in a wide variety of environments. What is central is to locate clean land, free of garbage and herbicide or biosolid use. The result is healthy plants with strong medicine. Personally, I prefer to forage as far away from the masses and their footprints as possible. Finding new harvesting places is always so much fun for me. I call it herbal reconnaissance. The land where one forages is held very dear as the wealth of herbal medicine, exquisite views, fresh air, sun, and clean water all combine to create incredible harvesting experiences, without worrying whether others will come behind to harvest in the same stands. Wildcrafting locations are sacred and a privilege to the person who took the time to find them.

field with purple flowers and mountains

3/26/2018 5:37:43 PM

I especially appreciate the recommendation to be conservative in harvesting. Being well versed on your desired plants before harvesting is a great way to show respect for nature and preserve harvesting areas for future years.

3/15/2018 4:31:14 PM

I'm so happy when I see better information like this on sustainable wildcrafting with how popular it's becoming. Thank you for the thoughtful information!!

3/15/2018 4:31:11 PM

I'm so happy when I see people sharing knowledge about sustainable gathering of plants. It's gaining such popularity that I love the idea of people being more educated with how they go about it. Thank you for the great information!

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