Have you ever been foraging? I think you may be surprised by the delights you find growing in your local woodlands and fields. Before we get started though, first things first let’s get down to the nitty gritty law associated to foraging. A question you may be wondering, is foraging legal? I can confirm that it is, as long as it isn’t for commercial use according to the 1968 theft act. What I would say though is be wary of where you choose to forage some areas are conservation sites which would obviously be a no, no and according to the Wildlife and Countryside Act 1981 it states that it is an offence to uproot any wild plants listed as protected species, all other types of plants however are absolutely fine to pick. As long as you follow these rules, you’re good to go!
Back to the fun stuff, there is so much to discover right on your doorstep! Whether it’s blackberries to make into a crumble, or flowers to put into a jug for your dinning room table why not go out get some fresh air and do some exploring? Different seasons will also bring with it a plethora of goodies so you can never tire of what you might find. During the summer months cow parsley is growing abundantly everywhere and for me it just epitomises summertime. Just placed in a vase on their own they are really beautiful and will brighten up your home immediately. Cow parsley also has medicinal and culinary uses too which you can find out more about here.
You may also find a number of herbs growing such as rosemary (which smells divine) why not pick a few sprigs to roast with your Sunday lamb? Delicious! Or if you are feeling really adventurous you could try making garlic and rosemary butter using this recipe. When out foraging I came across the most delicious smelling mint, another summer favourite! Mint is a wonderful beverage booster and can be added to a pitcher of water, used to make a fresh mint tea or added to your mojitos! Elderflower is another fantastic herb you can find when foraging particularly during May and June and is a popular picking for making Elderflower cordial. It’s important to note that the flowers and berries are the only edible part of the plant, it’s also key to cook the herb to destroy any toxic chemicals. It’s best picked when the buds are freshly open on a warm, dry and sunny day. Make sure you give the Elderflower a shake to remove any insects and rinse briefly in cold water before using. Whilst out exploring I spotted a gorgeous Hawthorn tree too, with its delicate pink flowers. It’s also known as the May-tree due to its flowering period. It is the only British plant named after the month in which it blooms. Personally, I think less is more when it comes to foraging and just a few stems placed in a pretty ceramic vessel or jug is all you need to brighten up your dining table.
I hope this has given you a few ideas and some inspiration to go and get your forage on and do some exploring! Summer is the perfect time of year to get outdoors and enjoy all the great treasures that nature has to offer, happy picking!
Photography: Claire Graham Photography
I actually fell into flowers by chance, it all started whilst away travelling through Central America back in 2008 when I had an epiphany that I wanted a career that allowed me to be more creatively hands-on (up until that point I had worked in the fashion and homeware industry). I decided to take the plunge & study for a creative degree, originally enrolling for an FDA in design display but fate stepped in as the university discontinued the course. This left me wondering what on earth I would study instead? Reevaluating the list of other course options available I spotted it… Floral Design and Events Management and thought to myself ‘that sounds interesting’. After just a couple of classes, I had fallen hook line and sinker for the flowers! Three years later I graduated with a first class BA Hons degree in Floral Design and Events Management and following on from my graduation established Joanne Truby Floral Design in 2012 and have never looked back since!
With a focus on design and details and a ‘thinking outside the box’ attitude when it comes to working with flowers, our style is natural and organic yet abundant with a romantic feel. We adore mixing different colours and textures to create stunning floral combinations. With an ethos for creating wow floral concepts, I'm inspired by many different elements around me; art, interiors, travel along with nature itself and the seasons. I adore mixing different colours and textures together to create truly stunning floral combinations and I love nothing more than seeing a design concept come to fruition on the day of a wedding or event after months of planning. I also love teaching our floral masterclasses, it makes me so happy passing on my knowledge and seeing people ecstatic with their final creations. When I’m not busy designing flowers I also love to write about them and have had the pleasure of guest blogging for a number of leading wedding blogs along with writing regular features for print magazines including Wedding Flowers and Accessories and Perfect Wedding sharing our expert knowledge and guidance on all things flower related. To me, flowers come armed with a superpower, which is never failing to evoke such happy emotions, & I feel very lucky to work with such naturally beautiful materials. I adore flowers & foliage's and like to work with the best of each season's offerings. The smell, the delicate petals and the wide array of colours, shapes and varieties available never cease to amaze me!