4 edible wild plants to forage this spring

Here is your guide to scouring edible goods in the wild. Watch out for these four wild vegetables on your next camping trip.

What better way to enjoy fresh ingredients in your dishes than to gather your own from the wild? Chef, Lauren Mozer recommends trying these four precious wild gems that are extremely hard to come by.


Morels cannot be cultivated. This is what makes them such a hot commodity when they’re in season. They are treasured amongst foragers and chefs, who hunt them down with gusto.

You will find morels near fallen elm trees, under hickory, or in old apple orchards. They’ll root around the edges of sandy forests. They like to breath and are often sporadic in their placement. The mushroom cap resembles a cross between a honeycomb and a conehead shaped brain that’s often yellow, sometimes dark brown/black.

Many say that morels have a flavour, once cooked, similar to toasted nuts or prime rib roast.


One of the signs that spring has arrived is the emerging green growth that emerges from the forest floor. Fiddleheads can be identified by a few characteristics that are unique to the Ostrich Fern:

  • Smooth skin with a deep green colour
  • U-shaped groove in the stem – looks similar to celery
  • When the fiddleheads emerge, they are covered in a papery brown chaff.
  • Ostrich ferns are distinguished by the 6-8 fronds that emerge from a single crown, and the u-shaped smooth stem.
  • Most often found under hardwood canopies such as maple or ash trees.
  • They should only be picked while still tightly coiled.


Ramps are a wild green that look like miniature green onions but with wider, flatter leaves, which poke up from the ground like rabbit ears. Both the white and green parts of the wild flower are edible. Flavour-wise, ramps fall somewhere between garlic and onions, with a unique combination of pungency and sweetness. Wild leeks grow in the deep woods, in patches. Due to over-picking in recent years, they have become quite rare. They can take up to two years to reproduce. Foragers are encouraged to pick only a portion of each patch they encounter, to avoid threatening the plant’s reproduction for years to come.


Like most wild versions, wild asparagus has a much finer taste than it’s commercially produced counterpart. You can find it in fields of tall grass. If not picked, it will grow into a tree! Pro tip: wear long pants while harvesting, as it’s often found near patches of poison ivy.