Dandelion Hunter: Foraging the Urban Wilderness

( 2 )

Overview

In this engaging and eye-opening read, forager-journalist Becky Lerner sets out on a quest to find her inner hunter-gatherer in the city of Portland, Oregon. After a disheartening week trying to live off wild plants from the streets and parks near her home, she learns the ways of the first people who lived there and, along with a quirky cast of characters, discovers an array of useful wild plants hiding in plain sight. As she harvests them for food, medicine, and just-in-case apocalypse insurance, Lerner delves ...
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Dandelion Hunter: Foraging the Urban Wilderness

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Overview

In this engaging and eye-opening read, forager-journalist Becky Lerner sets out on a quest to find her inner hunter-gatherer in the city of Portland, Oregon. After a disheartening week trying to live off wild plants from the streets and parks near her home, she learns the ways of the first people who lived there and, along with a quirky cast of characters, discovers an array of useful wild plants hiding in plain sight. As she harvests them for food, medicine, and just-in-case apocalypse insurance, Lerner delves into anthropology, urban ecology and sustainability, and finds herself looking at Nature in a very different way. Humorous, philosophical, and informative, Dandelion Hunter has something for everyone, from the curious neophyte to the seasoned forager.
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In 2007, after an epiphany while visiting upstate New York, Lerner cut loose from her newspaper reporter job in the urban wastelands of New Jersey to embark upon the “mysterious, powerful, and esoteric” work of herbalism and explore nature. This book relates her hunter-gatherer adventures through the streets, parks, yards, and environs of her new home in Portland, Ore., accompanied by her dog, Petunia, and a revolving cast of botanical experts and quirky friends: a wilderness survival teacher who introduces her to burdock-root and ant-egg cuisine; a “freegan” dumpster diver retrieving 50 pounds of gourmet ravioli and parmesan from a waste bin; an urban homesteader illegally but reverently butchering a roadkill deer. The book begins with Lerner exhausted and near starvation as she tries to fulfill her editor’s dare to live off wild plants for a week; she was unaware when she accepted the dare that in May, her chosen timeframe, plants are just waking up and pickings are slim. By the end of the book, she not only succeeds in a second wild-food challenge (culminating in a Thanksgiving feast that features venison, cattail, and rose-hip sauce), but she’s also become the neighborhood herbalist. Although Lerner’s occasional philosophizing suffers from oversimplification and recent-convert preachiness, this may be the funniest herbal adventure you’ll ever read, as she overcomes her naiveté with good humor and embraces the weedy wildness right outside her door. (Apr.)
From the Publisher
"Rebecca Lerner writes that 'the dirt on which we walk is made of stars.' So are we. And so is this elegant book, which illuminates a path to a nature-rich future." — Richard Louv, author of The Nature Principle and Last Child in the Woods"If and when the apocalypse arrives, you'll want Rebecca Lerner by your side – or, at least, her lucidly written new book, in which she and a pack of endearingly odd Portland pals demonstrate how to take locavorism to a whole new level (and provide some unexpected history, biology and mycology lessons in the process). You'll never look at weeds the same way again." — Brian Hiatt, senior writer, Rolling Stone "Rebecca Lerner proves that foraging in today's urban landscape is not only possible, but remarkably productive. In this charismatic and delightfully unpredictable book, she shares her experiences and insights in a way that touches upon the profound without being preachy." — Samuel Thayer, author of The Forager's Harvest and Nature's Garden"Wild girl herbalist Becky Lerner plunges into the green world on page one and keeps the reader dazzled with one crazy adventure after another, all the while educating us in the art of hunting the wild dandelion. Never has practical advice about wild foraging been so entertaining. Move over Euell Gibbons." — Matthew Wood, author of The Book of Herbal Wisdom"In 2007, after an epiphany while visiting upstate New York, Lerner cut loose from her newspaper reporter job in the urban wastelands of New Jersey to embark upon the "mysterious, powerful, and esoteric" work of herbalism and explore nature. This book relates her hunter-gatherer adventures through the streets, parks, yards, and environs of her new home in Portland, Ore., accompanied by her dog, Petunia, and a revolving cast of botanical experts and quirky friends: a wilderness survival teacher who introduces her to burdock-root and ant-egg cuisine; a "freegan" dumpster diver retrieving 50 pounds of gourmet ravioli and parmesan from a waste bin; an urban homesteader illegally but reverently butchering a roadkill deer….[the result] may be the funniest herbal adventure you'll ever read." — Publishers Weekly
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780762780624
  • Publisher: Rowman & Littlefield Publishers, Inc.
  • Publication date: 3/17/2013
  • Edition description: First Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 224
  • Sales rank: 1,368,740
  • Product dimensions: 5.40 (w) x 7.90 (h) x 0.70 (d)

Meet the Author

Rebecca Lerner has quickly become one of the best-known urban foragers in America. Through teaching, speaking and writing about the useful wild plants of Portland, Oregon, she seeks to "inspire and empower my fellow human beings to remember who we really are." Lerner and her popular blog, www.FirstWays.com, have been mentioned, quoted, profiled and interviewed by a variety of media outlets, including the Los Angeles Times, The Oregonian, the Boston Globe, and the Utne Reader.
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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted April 3, 2013

    Easily one of the most down-to-earth accounts of inter-connect

    Easily one of the most down-to-earth accounts of inter-connectivity and the way we all---flora, fauna, and folks---fit together. This book is an intimate account of one person's quest for knowledge, as much as it's a quest for belonging. Through funny, heartfelt, and personal stories featuring an interesting cast of Portland characters--both human and non--Rebecca Lerner brings readers into a whole new world, that already exists right under our toes.




    Highly recommended, especially since it includes forage-fare recipes in the back!

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted May 26, 2013

    This was a very intriguing book- well told story and extremely i

    This was a very intriguing book- well told story and extremely informative. Much of the information was relayed in a very light way and very easy to become absorbed. Very enjoyable.

    Was this review helpful? Yes  No   Report this review
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