Wild Plants of Colorado
(edible, medicinal, poisonous & utilitarian)
We will focus on the plants that we are most familiar with and can personally demonstrate their uses.
Eating the wrong plant can be lethal. NEVER eat a plant unless you are 100% sure of what you are eating and that you are certain that you have prepared it properly. Many plants look alike so it may be easy to make a bad choice. If in doubt, don't eat it.
We recommend you become very familiar with plants in your area before the need arises for you to use them. Go out and examine a plant closely and compare it to instructional books or whatever you can find on the internet. Once you are sure that you are looking at the same plant, sample it to familiarize yourself with the taste of the edible plant. Should you make a mistake, at least it wont be during a crisis situation and you can seek medical attention.
The supermarket of the wilderness, it is widespread throughout, swampy or wet areas.
Curly Dock leaves have a wavy crisped margin and a relative thinness and “lance like” shape.
Who needs to run to the store for salad greens when you can run out to your front yard for some dandelion?
Fireweed offers something useful in every stage of its growth.
Kinnikinnik, also known as Bearberry is a ground-cover frequently found in all of the western states but is known to grow in the northeastern states as well.
The tuberous roots of plants in the yucca family have long provided a carbohydrate-rich food source for indigenous peoples in arid areas.
This common cactus yields fresh edible petals and edible fruits. Be careful with the spines. The fruits or tunas should be removed of spines, sliced in half and seeds removed.
The aspen is a member of the poplar family that also includes willows and cottonwoods.
Though it can be edible if processes properly, the Showy Milkweed can be toxic. Forager Beware!
The Stinging Nettle can be use to make high protein food, tea, and even rope.