What Are Some Edible Plants of North America?


Quick Answer

Some edible wild plants available in North America include dandelion, cattail, cabbage palmetto and prickly pear. These plants have been used in whole or part as foods, though in some cases, they must be cooked or prepared in a special way to be edible.

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Full Answer

The dandelion is a very common North American weed. All parts of the plant are considered edible, though mature plants can be unpalatable due to bitterness. It is recommended to boil the root. Boiling can also remove bitterness from mature plants.

Cattail is also completely edible and is found across North America. The plant is very versatile. It can be used for jelly or ground into flour and can also be eaten raw.

Cabbage palmetto fruit were a staple food of the Seminole of Florida. They would process the fruit to make bread meal. The plant's bud can also be eaten, and it has a cabbage-like taste, hence the name.

Prickly pear fruit and paddles are edible once the thorns are removed. They can be found throughout the Southwest, Mexico and parts of the Caribbean.

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