An edible guide to hiking

Great news for nature lovers: now you can eat your surroundings with confidence

The Feasting for Change group has developed “Indigenous Plant Identification Cards” to assist you on your next hike.

The Feasting for Change group has developed “Indigenous Plant Identification Cards” to assist you on your next hike.

Great news for nature lovers: now you can eat your surroundings with confidence.

An edible guide to the indigenous plants of our area has just been released, compliments of Victoria’s Feasting for Change group. The collective has created 65 easy-to-read index cards which detail edible and medicinal native plants familiar to the Indigenous Nations of Southern Vancouver Island. From Camas to Grand Fir, each card features photos of the plant, along with details for identification, various uses for the flora and a highlight of three Indigenous languages surrounding it. A legend also defines seasons the plant can be harvested, and uses for specific  parts.

“It’s powerful when going on a hike to know what the plants are around you and realize the ways in which they are being used and have been used for a long time,” says Jen McMullen, who created the cards along with other members of the working group. “It’s important to recognize that these foods and medicines are still being used and we need to treat them with respect so they will still be available to our grandchildren’s grandchildren.”

Feasting for Change was created in 2009 to educate the community about Indigenous cultures, local food and plant knowledge.

Find the “Indigenous Plant Identification Cards” on Etsy for $30, or pick them up at the Saanich Adult Education Centre (7749 West Saanich). All proceeds benefit the centre and the Sencoten apprenticeship program. M

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