We took a walk along the Lagan Towpath, from the car park near Cutters wharf to the Lock keepers Inn. The weather was lovely, warm and sunny, but not muggy.
It’s a lovely walk, clean, pleasant with wild beauty everywhere. There’s not a ton to forage for right now, but I made some notes about what to come back for later in the year.
The little white plant is cow parsley. The first time I ever tried it, I was so worried that I’d confused it with hemlock I could hardly bring myself to eat it. I checked about 30 resources to make sure it was ok. When I finally tried it though… it wasn’t worth it, the taste was just, bleugh. In retrospect, it’s hard to confuse cow parsley with hemlock, and I wouldn’t make that mistake, but it wasn’t worth it. I did see hemlock along the Lagan too, though I forgot to photograph it, so do be careful as the two do bear a passing resemblance.
These are blackberry flowers. If you’re new to foraging, start with blackberries as everyone knows what these look like and there isn’t a lot to confuse them with. The brambles (blackberry bushes) are covered with flowers, so I’m expecting them to be prolific this year.
Wild alpine (dog) roses. I’ve never made anything with the flowers before, but I will this year. I have made rosehip syrup, which is rich in vitamin C (and costs a bundle to buy). Apparently you can also make an effective itching powder from the tiny little hairs inside the rosehip, but I’ve never tried that either.
It’s maybe not that clear, but these are little apples. I’m not sure if they are eating apples or crab apples, but either way I can make something with them.
There was also some honeysuckle, which I THINK is edible, but I need more research before I’ll pick it.
There were also tonnes of hawthorne and even a blackthorn bush, from which you get sloes, but I didn’t stop to snap them.
A note of caution though, whilst there were lots of edible things to forage for, I also saw hemlock and ivy berries that are poisonous. I’ve also previously seen water dropwort along here. Please check and check again, or better yet, check with some experienced before trying a wild food.