Tag Archives: dandelions

Preparing dandelions for forcing

The weather was a bit milder over the last few days, thawing sufficiently so that I could crowbar dandelion roots from the frozen soil and pot them up ready for winter forcing which will give a never ending supply of delicious, nutritious midwinter greens for free later in the winter (just a little effort)!
Just:
1. Dig up the roots

2. Remove (and eat) any green leaves

3. Plant the roots in soil up to the crown and then cover the crowns in a couple of centimetres of clean sand (I use buckets)

4. Store in the coolest place possible to keep them dormant  (it could also be outside if you don’t have a root cellar)

5. Move to a warmer place ( a cool room works well) a couple of weeks before you need the shoots (keep dark if you want delicious blanched shoots)

(This is the same method you can use for forcing chicory, but to my mind dandelions are even tastier and they sow themselves….and all you have to do is NOT to weed and harvest instead!)

 

Snow harvest

It snowed all day yesterday, but it’s unfrozen underneath and spring bulbs like snowdrops (snøklokke), coltsfoot (hestehov), winter aconite (vinterblom), Crocus tommasianus and Hepatica transylvanica are in flower under the snow. Remembering where the edibles are located, I can still harvest food under the snow:

Hablitzia tamnoides, Allium carinatum, Ranunculus ficaria var chrysocephalus (lesser celandine / vårkål), Alliaria petiolata (hedge garlic / løkurt) and (forced inside) dandelions (løvetann) 

Two month early spring foragables at 63.5N

It was one of the mildest December / January periods here since records began in the 1800s, no snow at sea level and no snow forecast, 3-4 cm of froszen soil at the surface and that’s it. Temperatures are currently like early April and early April foragables are now available!

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Dandelion crowns (løvetann)
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Lesser celandine (vårkål – the Norwegian name means spring greens!), edible until flowers appear
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Lesser celandine (vårkål – the Norwegian name means spring greens!), edible until flowers appear
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Hedge mustard (løkurt / Alliaria petiolata) with Oxalis acetosella (wood sorrel / gjøksyre)
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Primula veris (cowslip / hagenøkleblom)