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John Lee 's Profile
John Lee
Last Updated:
Lawrence, KS, United States
Climate Zone:
Cold Temperate
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Fall Harvest, like never before!

Posted by John Lee over 8 years ago

Not only did I have an excellent year of fruit and fertility production out in my permaculture Berth Gardens, but I have been practicing bushcraft and I've kept busy while my garden production weans off for fall, learning wild edible and medicinal plants.  Wild Plants of which I've made use (and from which I've saved seed) this year:

Amaranth (edible seed),
Asparagus (seeds for future crops),
Bindweed (edible flower and leaf - trail snack)
Chokecherry (jelly),
Cornelian Cherry (jelly),
Crab Apple (jelly; one of the few fruits other than Hawthorn and Buckthorn to be found in any abundance this fall in Denver)
Elderberry (jelly, tincture; Anthocyanin City and a real tedious one to remove from it's stem, this fruit is what I imagine Acai must be like to harvest),
Ground Cherry (jam; little tomatillo (Physalis) looking plants sprout in patches along trails and I felt silly I'd never noticed)
Hawthorn (jelly, "apple"sauce, tincture; at least 4 varieties found locally, installed and forgotten but doing just fine),
Lambsquarters (edible leaf - trail snack)
Muscadine Grapes (trail eating; I never find enough fruit for anything but a handful, but what a treat while out riding for hours!),
Mushrooms (cooking, tincture; Turkey Tail, Reishi, Shaggy Mane)
Raspberry (jelly, trail eating)
Rose Hip (jelly and tincture)

Others I found but did not identify soon enough to harvest when found include chestnut, currant, plum, sumac, and strawberry spinach but I did save a few seeds from each to plant out in the gardens.

Plants that I've found grow well in Colorado anywhere there is seasonal water and have value for their biomass production, easy propagation, windbreak capability, stick fuel, basketry, bowmaking, and other crafts:

Buckthorn (poisonous berries grow in such obnoxious abundance, but the plant obviously requires no love),
about a dozen variety of Salix (willow) varying from 4' clumping shrubs to trees over 30',
Spindle (so named for it's production of long, flexible stalks of wood - poisonous, but pretty pink seed pods),
Crab Apples and Hawthorns (sometimes it's difficult to tell which is which, but both produce edible fruit - Hawthorn happens to be mad healthy for human hearts),
Elderberry (great edible and medicinal berry, apparently propagates easily from root cuttings and hardwood cuttings)

All in all, I'd say I learned a lot this year.  Other than acquiring my PDC and having a few installations, I hosted tours and events and really put myself out there (taking family and friends with me) adventuring into the goods mother nature offers without our asking or assisting.  I reckon next year will be my most productive yet!

For photos of this year's harvest:  2015 Intelligent Rebellion Fall Harvest

Comments (1)

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Sarah Livingston
Sarah Livingston : Oh my goodness! Chokecherry. I miss it so. No one Georgia knows what I'm talking about. They think I have the name wrong. My great grandmas place in Coulee, ND had hedgerows of chokecherry as a windbreak around the large garden. She made jelly and syrup. For many years my great aunt would send me a jar of jelly when she would summer back in ND but she has found any for three years. EVERY single market stand or truck stop I see I stop at and look for chokecherry jelly. Could I pay you for some seeds? Pretty please. Just seeing you post the word chokecherry has me skipping around my house! I would be eternally grateful and be happy to help you make a dream come true for yourself or someone else! Think about it please! You truly enjoy the jelly. I used to eat chokecherry jelly on warm homemade bread instead of birthday cake. Sarah
Posted over 8 years ago

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My Badges
Consultant Pdc teacher
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Pri verified
Geoff Lawton
Type: Geoff Lawton Online PDC
Teacher: Geoff Lawton
Location: Online
Date: Feb 2015
Other course verified
Geoff Lawton
Type: Geoff Lawton Online Earthworks
Teacher: Geoff Lawton
Location: Online
Date: Feb 2015
Other course verified
Geoff Lawton
Type: Geoff Lawton Reading the Landscape
Teacher: Geoff Lawton
Location: Online
Date: Feb 2015
Other course unverified
Regenerative Agriculture Workshop
Type: Other
Teacher: Mark Shepard
Location: Sylvan Dale Guest Ranch, Loveland, CO
Date: Jan 2016
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Climate Zones
John Lee has permaculture experience in:
Cold Temperate
Cool Temperate
Semi Arid

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