I love this time of year – spring flowers are beginning to pop out everywhere, including some of my favorite edible wildflowers. One day last week I decided it was time to begin picking season in earnest. I set out with two baskets and came back a few hours later with this haul: forsythia in the smaller basket and dandelions/violets in the larger one.
The next day, I went back to a neighbor’s house up the street where I had seen lots of violets growing. When I say lots, I mean – her grass:weeds ratio was probably 1:4. She had a serious crop of violets, with dandelions, wild strawberries and wild onion also en masse.
I know this neighbor a bit. She knew who I was when I rang the door. I showed her my baskets and asked, “Would it be ok if I picked some of your violets?” She laughed, threw her arms in the air, and said, “Yes! Please! Take them all. If you need more, I’ll take you out back too!” Seems no one ever says no to someone asking if she can pick their weeds. I collected a full basket of violets that afternoon and went back for more violets and dandelions the next day too. I probably still have a couple afternoons’ picking left there then I’ll move on to another house further down the street. God love kind neighbors who don’t believe in spraying their yards with chemicals!
If you want to learn how to make your own flower jelly from the weeds in your yard, you can read my article on this topic on the Countryside Network website. It details how to make jelly from the summer flower Queen Anne’s Lace but the process is the same for all edible flowers: make an infusion then cook the infusion into jelly adding sugar, lemon juice and pectin.
Happy flower picking!