Riceroot and Hog Peanuts

I like the comment by Eve Emshwiller in the interesting article http://whyfiles.org/2012/farming-native-american-style  looking at how to learn from how the Native Americans had developed stable, sophisticated food-gathering systems:
“There were a lot of people who were not considered agriculturalists, who were [supposedly] just gathering from the wild. But if you really understand what they were doing, there is not a sharp line between gathering and farming. There is a huge continuum of ways that people manage resources and get more from them.”  This is a message that I try to get across in my book where many examples are given of this continuum between foraging and gardening.

I grow a couple of the wild gathered tubers mentioned in the article. First, Riceroot is a really hardy edimental  and an important foraged food plant across its range (the first group of pictures below). The last three pictures are of Hog peanut (Amphicarpaea bracteata).

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A beautiful yellow flowered form of rice-root
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The rice is the small bulbils just below the surface
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Fritillaria camschatensis with the normal coloured flowers known as Svartlilje (Black Lily) here in Norway

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The rice

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Hog peanut seed pods harvested in my garden
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Hog peanut subterranean seed, this plant is unique in having two types of seed
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I saw hog peanut in its native habitat in Vermont this summer, here at Mt. Tom, Woodstock


 

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