Paperback: 256 pages
Publisher: Falcon; 1st edition (January 1, 2006)
Product Dimensions: 8.9 x 7 x 0.7 inches
Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces
Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars See all reviews (12 customer reviews)
Best Sellers Rank: #1,530,363 in Books (See Top 100 in Books) #114 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > By Region > Midwest #132 in Books > Crafts, Hobbies & Home > Gardening & Landscape Design > Lawns #405 in Books > Humor & Entertainment > Humor > Cooking
I have had the best time reading this book! I used it as a treat to bribe myself into doing other work.I am personally prone to finding those plants considered to be weeds and providing a new home for them in my yard. I'm also prone to planting native herbs in my yard, since they are the most likely to survive the local summers and winters without my care -- Beautiful and tough as nails, who can resist that?Roger, however, takes this a good bit further, into his personal experiences with using wild plants for food in anecdotes, stories and experiences.My husband is next in line to read it. Upon hearing me snort and giggle with my nose in the book, he would ask what it was I was laughing about, and I'd read a portion aloud. It was great fun and I always recommend great fun. Well, I recommend it to my friends, anyway ...And it now has a spot in my personal weed library! Definitely, definitely.
Maybe this review doesn't qualify because I didn't bother finishing the book. Being a fellow weed-eater, I had high hopes. It started out refreshingly quirky as Roger Welsch describes personal problems he encounters by keeping a weedy yard. All too quickly you realize this is a recurring and boring theme about legal battles and neighborly arguments. Roger is not afraid to label the weed-ignorant as half-wits and idiots.This book is more about Roger and less about weeds--and most relayed weed information can be compared to advice found in some do-it-yourself books. Not enough to actually convey anything or get you started. Roger is the first to admit this is not a field guide, but I found his anecdotes mean-spirited, unfunny and mostly useless. The final straw for putting the book down came in chapter six when a good friend of Roger's shares the secret for spotting morel mushrooms. Roger states, "The day he decided to share his secret with me was like an act of brotherhood...I couldn't believe he was doing it. That secret is so simple, it's like fishing with dynamite. Will I share that secret with you? No."Keep that passage in mind when you shell out $14.95 to purchase this book.
There are all kinds of tidbits on edible plants, and this book is also full of funny stories, and even some recipes that have my mouth watering just to read them. I like this book so much I am sending it to a friend who runs a wilderness skills school. Would that some of my textbooks in school had been both as informative and entertaining as this book. Very well done.
I like the humorous twist of the title!I am quite interested in living naturally, and this book is a good primer for that. It is not an encyclopedia of which plants are edible (he states that often) but does get one interested in digging deeper (pun intended!). He does mention many plants that he has tried and how to prepare them. He also delves into the Plains Native American lifestyle, and points out that many pioneers died of starvation in the midst of plentiful food.The Natives also had disposable diapers & bean bag chairs long before White Man even thought of them!!! Milkweed is no longer a weed on our place. (There is a correlation between those two statements!)If only we had learned from them, instead of conquering them . . . .
I bought this book in hopes of learning which weeds are edible. The biggest part is knowing what they look like. This book does not have photos of the plants. Very disappointing.
Some books are just plain fun to read, and Welsch's takes a high place on that list. As an avid picker of wild greens, it's quite amazing how many plants take their place at his table. The wide-ranging narrative offers many vignettes, from the neighbor trying to take over his river frontage to his campaign for county weed control officer (with a unique, pro-weed platform).If you're looking for hints about what to pick, don't get your hopes up. He very deliberatly doesn't list edible plants or preparations, since regional selections differ so widely. Instead of the plants themselves, this looks more at the man who loves them and at his hunter-gatherer experiences. If that's what you want, great, but I hoped for more how-to.-- wiredweird
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