Foraging directly near a road is not a good idea unless you think your body is in need of heavy metals (that's a joke). My personal rule for roads is to make some distance between you and the road. For example, if I see chicory and amaranth growing near a road, that tells me that those plants can be found in the area... I park my car, walk 50-100' from the road (thereby creating a safety barrier) and look for chicory and amaranth there. It's also a good idea to go uphill from a road. That way you will ensure that there's less run off. I think it's always good to be cautious and take steps to keep yourself safe. That said, we live in a world that's full of roads and pollutants and it's impossible to get away from them altogether. It's up to the individual to assess how harmless or toxic a road is and whether harvesting plants near it is a good idea. I never harvest plant near freeways, but will eat food that I find off of remote country roads. Makes sense? Lastly, greens (especially wild green) draw toxic matter out of the body, so if you do happen to eat something that's been contaminated, it's nice to know that they are on your side.
Gerald Henderson wrote:Hi there! I'm curious if you would recommend foraging from the roadside. I'm in an area where a lot of salt and dirt are put on the roads in the winter to mitigate snow and ice. Then there's also whatever chemicals may be dripping from cars passing by. I see miles of wild chicory and amaranth, but they are all right off the roadside so I've been hesitant to collect any. Thanks for your offer here and any help you may provide!
Gerald Henderson wrote:Thank you both, that is very helpful. It's sad that we need to take such precaution... why do we poison ourselves?
So if you're going 50-100 feet off the road, do you check if it's private property and if so who owns it? Most of the land here (midwest US) that isn't roadside is farmland with GMO, herbicide laden corn and soy. The roadsides are one of the few remaining wild places it seems.
Also, I've been watching your videos on youtube now and they are very helpful! Thanks again!