This is the time of the year when all of the fruits come to life. Foraging in Summertime is always a worthwhile adventure. From coastal trails to edible flower to long stemmed plants that have fully grown, there are endless wild treats to learn about during the summer months. In addition to being a ripe time for picking it is also a beautiful way to experience the outdoors and get a welcome boost in Vitamin C.
We head to our local forest tracks, travel to our nearby beaches and climb the mountains of Europe to find the best wild produce, experiment with summer herbs and enjoy the mindful activity of foraging with friends. Take our your foraging basket and guide, you are ready to discover what’s in season and use some wild edibles in your summer dishes.
- Borage Flowers
Also known as the wild blueberry, the bilberry has a long history of use in Ireland. In the middle ages they were also used as a dye. They are a protection plant that contain vitamin C and reduce inflammation.
Sweet wild strawberries can be found in the Northern hemisphere along the trails in the summertime. They are much smaller than your average supermarket strawberries and used to make tasty desserts like jam, scones and short bread.
You will find these dark purple berries heavy on the elder trees from August to October. The berries and flowers are packed with anti-oxidants. In April you can make traditional elderflower cordial from the cream soaked flowers and in September you can stock up on elderflower jam.
Mullein is easy to recognise, the bright yellow flower blooms in the summer months. Use the flower in tea or oil to help fight infections. The leaves are believed to help the respiratory system and asthma sufferers.
Often considered one of natures superfoods, stinging nettles are the perfect addition to summer smoothies. Foraging for this green leaf starts in March and you can collect it throughout the summer months. Note: Be sure to wear gloves.
With a long history of medicinal use, this weed is often underestimated. Used to treat kidney infections, liver problems and jaundice. You can treat it like you use spinach in recipes. Once you become familiar with this rounded leaf you will start to see if everywhere; parks, forest trails, woodlands and mountainous areas.
Want to add a splash of sour to your summer salads, Wood Sorrel is available year round and you will find carpets of this delicious green in your nearby woodland.
The golden queen of the forest, Chanterelles will start popping out to say hello as early as July. These sweet mushrooms are the perfect addition to pasta dishes and very popular with 5 star chefs around the world. If you find some chanterelle treasure don’t ruin the taste by washing them too hard. For a simple side dish, gently fry with butter, garlic and pepper. You can’t miss the wavy look of these mushrooms however there are some lookalikes out there so be careful and always forage with a guide.
Chicken of the Woods
Bright yellow or burnt orange and jutting out from the trunk of a tree, it is hard to miss this variety of wild mushroom. Known as Chicken of the Woods because it has a similar texture to pulled chicken when you pull it apart. Mostly found on dead or dying hardwood trees.
Ceps aka Porcini mushrooms are some of the most prized wild mushrooms you can find in the late summer months. They are delicious but not as readily available or as easily spotted as other varieties. Commonly found underneath oak and beech trees, these shrooms are the perfect addition to any of your favourite Italian dishes.
This is an early summer treat that not many people take advantage of. Pickled walnuts are one of our favourite side dishes in summertime.
Join one of our next foraging tours or find out more about foraging in summertime with our free foraging guide.