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The Practical Forager connects the dots between the wild, the garden, the market, the kitchen, and yourself

Once a client requested jokingly that she wished my knowledge could be tinctured into a bottle that I could sell her. Inspired by this, the idea for the book The Practical Forager was born. 

The Practical Forager is a guide to gathering food in today's world. It shows a way of thinking and eating like a forager without quitting you job and running off into the woods. It answers the question, "can I actually live off the wild in this day and age?" and takes it many steps further.

foraging the superfood aronia
foraging the superfood aronia

A Sample of Topics:

  • Nature Misses You -- How to Think and Act Like a Forager
  • Blurring the Line Between the Wild and Garden
  • Grocery Store Botany -- The Family Method of Learning Plants
  • Guide to 25 Common Edible Wild Plants of the World
  • Easy Guide to Gardening, Growing Wild Plants, Tending to the Wilderness, and Self Reliance
  • Water -- spring water, filters, fluoride,  in garden, landscape, wilderness
  • The Kitchen -- How to Shop and Eat Like a Forager. High Powered Blenders -- the New Paleo?  
  • Nutrition and Health -- Oxalates, Calories, Animal Foods, Water, Soil Mineralization, GMO's, Biochar, Environmental Toxins, Fresh and Local Food
  • The Economics, Legality, Politics, and Dangers of Food Gathering
  • Foraging and Sustainability -- Decimating the environment and the illusion of scarcity, the extremes of waste
  • Over 30 recipes
  • personal stories
  • resources for further exploration

We must face the fact that our food system, our health, and our interactions with the planet are in dire need of reform. We have overwhelming pollution, massive loss of soil fertility, lack of diversity in food, dangerous GM0's, ecological destruction -- the situation is unsustainable, killing the planet, and slowly killing us. The good news is the solutions have been discovered and they are myriad. In my 13 years of exploring these solutions, it is my conclusion that the future of food looks more like foraging than it does farming.

Nature creates resilient ecosystems that produce food and help the planet grow. If we follow the patterns of nature in our design of gardens, farms, and landscapes, and we understand how to properly support and regenerate wild ecosystems, our role becomes more and more like that of a forager.  The biggest challenge I've found isn't designing the garden or supporting the wilderness, but it's how to be yourself a forager, one who is in a natural ecologically sound relationship with the ecosystem that produces your food.  How to harvest, prepare, store, and how to incorporate what nature locally produces into your life.  

Over the past several years, I have led thousands of people on wild food walks and given dozens of lectures on food, gardening, and foraging.  I have written articles as well as two books on the subject and have been interviewed on the radio several times, including KPFA.   I was  on the Travel Channel's The Wild Within TV show, and my work is mentioned in various publications such as Time magazine, the Wall Street Journal Online, and the San Francisco Chronicle.

Much of the success gained  I attribute to the broadness of my interests and explorations, and my coming into this material in adulthood.  I've found that not being exposed to these things as a child gives me a perspective more suited to teaching beginners and modern people. 

preparing a wild foraged dinner
preparing a wild foraged dinner

Becoming a modern, practical forager requires a lot more than field guides, such as my previous books (The Bay Area Forager and Crash Course in Wild Mushroom Foraging), can possibly provide. The Practical Forager is a book about changing the way you think about the relationship between yourself and your food while at the same time providing extremely practical advise -- all wrapped up in a crash course on the current state of affairs on this planet.  

Although there is a deep philosophical and spiritual basis to my work, it's focus on being applicable to daily living.  A guide to starting as small as possible but within sight of a total transformation of the world.  

Risks and challenges Learn about accountability on Kickstarter

Self publishing has been a tremendous discovery for me, and taught me valuable lessons for my first two books. I understand what costs and delays to expect, and what it takes to finish an entire book to its completion. In order for me to produce a first printing, I need a minimum of $10,000 to make this happen. In order to produce more books, and to get it out in a quicker amount of time, any contributions over that amount would be greatly appreciated. I am trying to connect with funders through KickStarter in order to make The Practical Forager a reality.

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