With the price of necessary items such as food and fuel rising, I suspect that more people will take up gardening, foraging and fishing.

Having done all three of these activities for most of my life, I can assure readers that with a little effort, you can gather enough wild foods to greatly supplement your diet and thereby reduce your food budget.
There are lots of good guidebooks out there to help you learn what wild plants you can safely consume. “Wild Plants of Maine – A Useful Guide,” one of my own titles, remains popular enough that it is in its third revision. It has helped countless people to discover the world of free, wild foods. My books aren’t the only ones out there, though, so do some checking.

With some guidance, anyone can learn how to prepare a totally homegrown/foraged/fished-for meal. I do it frequently. You may even be able to harvest lots of healthful wild edibles without leaving your backyard.

Under the feeder

The big news right now is that while some days feel more like winter, spring has arrived and wild birds are showing up in droves. Last week I mentioned hearing geese by Marsh Stream. This week I viewed several large Vee’s of returning Canada geese.

Robins, too, are showing up in large flocks.

A friend tells me that woodcock have already begun their springtime, airborne mating ritual in the quiet evenings.

And last week I watched more turkey vultures than I could count, wings carried on the dihedral, soaring on the thermals.

Finally, pussy willows are out, the silvery catkins beckoning passersby to stop and cut a few stems.

So let cold spells come. They will go the same way. Spring is here.