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John Wright's Foraging Blog

Here John will be posting random jottings about foraging and the life of a wild food fanatic...

Conservation part 1
Note: this is the first of a two part blog entry. It deals with the unwarranted problems I have had when attempting to teach foraging. The second part will explain why foraging is, in fact, environmentally friendly. I have always thought that righteous indignation should be the eighth dea...read more
Published 17-03-2014

Hooch - an impractical guide.
This is the first in a series of articles on booze drawn from the manuscript of my Booze Handbook which were not included in the published version because there was not enough room. I have some very bad news for you – distilling your own liquor at home is illegal, even for persona...read more
Published 08-03-2014

Celtic Trips
I have been very lucky recently to have been invited first, a couple of weeks ago, to Scotland to take a seashore foray, and then to Belfast to present a talk to the British Phycological Society on seaweeds. Both were very exciting though the latter was ta little daunting. Giving a talk about sea...read more
Published 12-07-2013

Death Cap poisoning in Somerset
I had a bit of a lay-in this morning only for the phone to ring at about 8am. It was for me. Somerset local radio had called to tell me that someone had died from eating Death Caps and would I give an interview later in the morning. Not a terribly good start to any day. At 11:45 I duly ga...read more
Published 29-11-2012

Locked in a Room
I have been locked in my "office" for three months now writing a new book and I am starting to look paler and weedier than usual. But things are about to change as I prepare for my first serious organised foray of the year. It is going to be a shock getting in the water during a cold Ap...read more
Published 17-04-2012

Predicting the mushroom season and cider.
Every year people ask me what the mushroom season will be like, that is – when it will arrive and how big the crop. I always tell them and am nearly always wrong. The fungi appear in response to wet weather, so fungi-forecasting is indistinguishable from weather forecasting, ie impossi...read more
Published 08-09-2011

Gower and River Cottage
I made a trip back to the Gower last weekend, retracing many of the steps I made while researching my Seashore Handbook. It was there that I photographed the mushrooms growing on the cliff edge at the Worm's Head, the sea holly and the crab hunting expedition. Also the sea rocket - which tast...read more
Published 05-08-2011

Weeds
We have been doing a lot of "sorting out" in and around the house this year - upgrading the loft to accomodate the large number of bottles of booze I have been making this year (I have been writing a Guardian blog and have had to up the pace a bit)  and building a shed in the garde...read more
Published 22-06-2011

Weather and wine
I took another Seashore Foray yesterday, this time for River Cottage. I have always been fairly lucky with the weather on the forty or so such trips I have made. But not yesterday. The strong (force 6) easterly wind kept the tide in by about 30cms and this and the large waves made getting my pots...read more
Published 03-05-2011

An unlikely forage
February is not exactly a prime month for foraging so when someone asked me last week to take himself (Tim) and Em  on a foraging trip to celebrate her birthday I enquired if he was absolutely sure. Well he was, so I did my best to find as much as I could for them. I seldom get out and abo...read more
Published 01-03-2011

Winter Foraging
Before Christmas most foraging would have required a pick axe and x-ray vision - everything was frozen solid and, mostly, hidden by snow. A winter forage is hard at the best of times, but these were the worst. The snow and extreme cold are behind us, for the present, to be replaced by grey sk...read more
Published 06-01-2011

Truffles
It has been a very good year so far and I just hope it will continue to be good until at least the first week of November. My forays are in full swing at the moment with a foray nearly every day. I have taken three at River Cottage so far and they have all been great fun in their different ways. ...read more
Published 07-10-2010

Christopher Robin
On Friday I went to Clarence House to take part in a forum on sustainability. I was part of a panel which included Lord Marland and Paul Heiney, and was chaired by Jon Snow. I have a recurring dream that I am put on stage in front of several hundred people and have to talk for an hour on a...read more
Published 17-09-2010

Back from foreign parts
I spent the last half of August in Tunisia on a family holiday. It was our first sun and sea holiday for five years so I think we had earned it. I bought a netbook to take with me so that I could keep in touch and update this blog while I was away. Well it lasted three days before deciding that t...read more
Published 06-09-2010

Cherry Plums and things
Many species are hard to come by and when you do find them are found in depressingly small quantities. Strawberries, redcurrants, raspberries all seem to come in little pots, barely enough for a mouthful sometimes. But there is one species that is found in such huge quantities that the basket and...read more
Published 11-08-2010

New Book and Blackberries
It is very exciting to have my new book "Hedgerow" in the shops. Always a worry though - are there any mistakes? I am assured by a fellow author that there always are, you just have to hope they are small ones. And will people like it? Sales have been very good so far - I hope they stay...read more
Published 04-08-2010

Dry Spring
It has been a dry spring and I have seen very little in the way of fungi this year. The recent rain should bring a few of the early species up - look out for Oyster Mushrooms on fallen beech trees - watch out for maggots though - it is notorious for them. Also a friend has just told me he found s...read more
Published 01-07-2010

Foraging Courses with John Wright

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NOV022014
Mushroom foray in the New Forest
New Forest mushroom foray
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