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The Pocahontas Nature Club and the Hillsboro Library Friends are joining forces once again to present their very popular Wild Edibles Festival.
This year it will be a two-day affair, on April 17 and 18. Everything takes place at the Hillsboro Public Library and Hillsboro Elementary School next to the library.
This event is free.
Beginning at 5:30 Friday evening, there will be snacks, music and registration for Saturday walks. At 7 p.m., Bill Beatty from the Oglebay Institute will give a presentation on West Virginia plants.
Saturday events will include workshops and nature walks to identify wild edible plants from 10 a.m. until 3 p.m., with a review of the walks and a pot luck supper to follow.
If you miss the Friday evening registration, you may register Saturday morning from 9 to 10 a.m.
Please note: participant numbers are limited for the walks, so registration is required.
Workshops are 45 minutes in length with no pre-registration necessary. You will receive a map and information at the door on Saturday. Some workshops will be “first come, first served” as far as participant numbers. The topics will include dandelions, mushrooms, salad greens, herbal teas and survival plants.
This is a wonderfully informative and highly popular event, so I encourage you to plan ahead if you would like to attend. Lunch can be purchased at the Pretty Penny Café, which is within walking distance, or you can order a box lunch from My Daughter’s Attic that will be delivered to the event at lunch time.
If you want to do a little preparation before the event, check out these books at the Hillsboro Library: Growing and Marketing Ginseng, Goldenseal, and other Woodland Medicinals, by W. Scott Persons and Jeanine Davis, primarily focuses on medicinal plants, but does feature an extensive section on ramps.
The Complete Guide to Edible Wild Plants, Mushrooms, Fruits and Nuts, by Katie Letcher Lyle, contains complete instructions on how to find, identify, and prepare many of the most commonly found wild foods, featuring such recipes as wild asparagus pizza and blackberry mousse.
Edible Forest Gardens, by Dave Jacke, explains how to cultivate some of your favorite wild edibles in your own garden.
There is also a wonderful DVD titled “Wild Edible Plants: the Foragers Harvest” which is especially useful when it comes to learning how to identify wild edibles, and when and how to harvest them.
So put on your hiking boots and head to Hillsboro April 17 and 18.
We hope to see you there.
If you would like more detailed information on the walks or the workshops, please call the library 304-653-4936.

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