Category Archives: Foraging

Horsetail – click image to view newsletter


Foraging in 2012 with The Natural Path

Hello Lovely people!

I hope this email finds you well and enjoying Spring?

For those who have contacted me about foraging or anyone who is keeping an eye out… sorry for the wait… however, here it is!

As a lot f you know, my winter job is Coppicing and Hedge laying. Well, its been a very busy Hedge laying and Coppicing season this year. What with the leaves dropping late last Autumn everything we had to achieve became a bit of a hurry, and we had a lot to achieve before the leaves came back on this Spring! A Whopping 11.5 hectares of Coppice was restored throughout Dorset and Wiltshire and nearly 1 mile of hedge was layed.

But enough of that! Its the foraging your here for! Now Spring has leapt into action there is a plethora of wild and tasty things to forage for. There is no excuse not to get out there and gather something wild to add to your dinner!

The first date for a Forage walk will be Saturday May 5th and will be held at in and around the hedgerows of GoldHill Organic farm in Child Oakford.  Cost is £10 per person, spaces are limited so that you get the best of my attention.

The first Taster Day will be on Saturday May 19th when I will be focusing on gathering things which we can make free Booze from… Elderflowers, Gorse, Colts Foot…

Its a whole day submerged in Nature sampling her alcoholic delights and learning to make your own (hic) Cost is £50 per person & booking is essential!

Please have a look at my web site for more information on those and all the other foraging events.

You’ll find all the years dates listed there along with information about the venues. This year things have changed quite a bit.  I will be expending into other venues to forage in more deeply in specific habitats. Take Goldhill Organic Vegetable farm for example, Last year I did a couple of days forestry on this delightful farm tucked away in the heart of the village. You can find out more about them here.  Being organic their hedgerows are packed to the gunnels with fabulous wild greens and herbs (the Horseradish is extraordinary!)  There is also Holton Lee for fantastic seashore foraging with its wide ranging salt marsh and waters edge laden with sea weeds, a safe marine environment to harvest from. More information on that venue is here

Robin Wood on the Wiltshire boarders supplied me with an abundance of fungi as it has a multitude of woodland habitats from Broadleaf to Conifer. As for Spring head in Fontmell, this is without question the most phenomenal venue for my wild flower meadow forages during the summer, the heady scent of sweet nectar and blowsy butterflies are not to be missed on a hot summers day!

Have a look, see what you think and let me know if you want to come play, I look forward to catching up with you over 2012.

Please feel free to contact me if you have any questions or need further information.

Warm spring wishes, Lucie

07903 587 376

SATURDAY 22ND OCTOBER, 10am, Fungi Forage, Bonsley Wood nr Blandford

Morning my lovelies, I hope this email finds you well?

Well, it looks like we are finally going to see the start of Autumn… a bit late but better later than never!

As such I am going to hold a fungi forage at Bonsley wood near Blandford this Saturday from 10am onwards…

I have had to cancel the last couple of walks as the weather was too nice for fungi, so this weekend will hopefully see an emergence! However, it has been an amazing year for blackberries (I was still picking them on Sunday… Unheard of!)

So, anyway, if you fancy a stroll through the woods looking for droolworthy fungi to add to your food come and join me!
The cost is £10 per person and children under 10 go free.

Please let me know if you’d like to come along either by email or you can call me on 07903 587 376

Hope to see you there!

Blustery Autumn wishes, Lucie
07903 587 376

Email exchange

Dear Nessa thanks for your detailed email. Certainly we would be happy to let TTSN members know about your project which I know from the odd visit is a lovely place to sit and contemplate.

You could send your notices etc to both Sue and I and we will see that they get publicised.

On a personal note I am away for a couple of weeks but when I get back I am sure that Lin and I will make time to come down and meet you all. I have added you to our mailing list so that you also hear about events this end of Dorset,hope thats ok,

Best Wishes, vince

———- Forwarded message ———-

From: Nessa Hickish <>

Date: 25 July 2011 22:48

Subject: RE: TTSN Forage Party + Cooking on Thurs. evening + Blandford Museum Bees (Useful Info from Alex today)


Hi Vince – I am Nessa Hickish the Chairman of the Victorian Kitchen Garden Club and we are most interested in your organisation too. Yes, we do operate on a Sat/Sun alternate morning – in the summer from 9.30 and the winter 10 a.m.

The times are always up in the passage way leading down to Bere’s Yard. We are quite a happy old band with a handful of younger ones thrown in to add a bit of zest! It would be of value for us to join up with you as we have lost the BVM museum link so anything that is going on could perhaps be through TTSN. We are intending to run a Quiz night in October and a Potato Day in March – which your bloggers might be interested in.

We do grow Heritage crops mostly seed bought from Pennards (the potato day people) of Somerset. We are still i nthe process of developing the garden and constructing the framework of it. The next big item is a substantially built storage/display stable. We have a rough plan. We are intending the end walls to be made of cob – a taught class where we shall learn how to make our own ‘bricks.’

In 3 seasons we have come a long way – we still have a long way to go, but that is the nature of gardening – no instant fix!

Hopefully we shall see you in the garden sometime soon. John has been a good linking person since he has become a member. He spends a lot of time in the garden and is keen to learn.

The bees have been a recent introduction and we are seeing how they/we get along together. Hopefull they will stay as they are so beneficial to us. Alex Cooper looks after them and is also extremely dedicated to his work.

Heather is our Head Gardener and Elaine is our most able secretary; Sylvia links us to the museum/education spokesperson and is our ‘grant specialist’. We have a great team of blinking hard working and dedicated members.

That’s us – regards Nessa Hickish

Date: Sun, 24 Jul 2011 09:26:00 +0100

Subject: Re: TTSN Forage Party + Cooking on Thurs. evening + Blandford Museum Bees (Useful Info from Alex today)




Hallo John,

the weeding followed by the forage was great fun. Probably a dozen people walked with Lucie and she is a really knowledgeable girl.

Its not the best time of year to find what one might call substantial food but we certainly had plenty of leaves etc to add to salads for nutrition and flavour.The cooking was good but needed a little more thought, next time we shall be better prepared. Maybe for an Autumn event…hope you will come.Also next time we might follow up with a short info email that covers everything that we saw, I shall discuss with nLucie what we can do.

Can I ask a bit about your Sat-Sun morning events in your garden project ? If you let me know more I shall get it posted on the TTSN website and circularise the details.

I am away for a couple of weeks but when I get back I should like to come over,

Best Wishes, vince

By the way would you and your friends like to subscribe to our TTSN blog it does circ lots of info and ideas ?

On 22 July 2011 16:23, John Barclay <> wrote:

Hello Vince,

Glad to hear about your forage – how was the cooking?! – and for interest, how many people?

Our event tomorrow morning is just our regular weekend work session in the garden (09.30 – 12.00 or so), which falls on Sat. this week – alternate Sats and Suns, so the following one will be Sun. 31st.

When we have a date for the session on the bees, shall I let you know? .. any of your members always welcome to whatever we do, of course.

Best wishes – John

On 22/07/2011 08:12, vince adams wrote:

Hallo, the weather ewas ok last night and we had an interesting forage, good fun !!

Tell me what is the event in the Museum Garden tommorrow ?

Sounds interesting,

regards, vince

On 21 July 2011 02:50, John Barclay <> wrote:

Hello everyone,

First of all, I thought some of you might be interested in the forage and cooking event in Child Okeford this evening – details below – tho the met office forecast for that area seems to be a lot wetter than Blandford’s for this evening! (Whatever the weather, I won’t be free to come to Gold Hill myself, unfortunately.)

Secondly, concerning our bees at the Museum Garden, I had a very interesting and positive 45 mins with Alex there yesterday (Wednesday), and he’s doing his best to address all our concerns (about aggressive behaviour of a few bees when we work near the hives, and about giving us more information) – tho he couldn’t do anything with the hives yesterday, due to the rain. Drier weather today should help.

If I’ve understood correctly, his immediate action will be to remove about 2/3 of the bees in the more active hive (on the left) and give the remaining bees more space by adding an empty section – as well as removing the 60lb or so of honey they’ve made since he added on those extra sections at the top of each hive. (Those sections were only to provide space for honeycomb – nothing to do with adding more bees!) There will also be 20 or 30lb to take from the other hive. The aggression may have come from their having so much honey to defend.

Depending on the weather, step two should be possible from next Tuesday (26 July), when Alex will have new Queens available, bred from a Danish strain with a calmer temperament ! .. He will then work his way thru our hives, find and remove the 2 existing queens and ‘re-queen the hives’ … From then on, things should gradually improve, as the existing bees die off and the newly hatched ones replace them. The reduced overcrowding should also help …

Information Session for everyone interested

Alex will suggest some possible dates for this – maybe as soon as next week.

Bring along your questions and they will be answered !!

Many thanks to Alex … hope to see some of you in the Garden on Saturday.

Best wishes – John

On 20/07/2011 14:46, vince adams wrote:

Transition Town Sturminster Newton Event

SOS Reminder

6.30pm tomorrow Lucie is leading a Forage at Gold Hill Organic Farm after the Weeding Party.

[ which is weekly every Thurs. at 5pm, for those who don’t know – “GREAT COMPANY, FRESH AIR AND A BAG OF WONDERFUL VEGGIES FOR THE WEEKEND” ]

Try and get along and stay for whatever we find being cooked afterwards.

Bring Family and friends it should be fun regardless of the weather !!

Vince Adams

Follow me on Twitter @TTSNVince
Mobile 07887942888
Home 01258473135

Woodland Trust – Look out for sloes and rosehips

Event Reminder – Thursday 21st July!!

TTSN Event

SOS Reminder

6.30pm tommorrow Lucie is leading a Forage at Gold Hill Organic Farm after the Weeding Party.

Try and get along and stay for whatever we find being cooked afterwards.

Bring Family and friends it should be fun regardless of the weather !!

Click here for details

TTSN Mini Event Thursday 21st July at 6.30 pm followed by glow worm walk


Lucie Cowles a well known local expert in foraging, woodlands and the environment generally has kindly agreed to organise a forage in and around Gold Hill Organics in Child Okeford.

The walk will start after weeding which is held every Thursday on the Farm at just after 6.30pm. Everyone is welcome to joing the Weeding Party which starts at 5.00pm or just come along to the Forage.

We plan to cook and eat anything we find and its possible that the Cake Tin might stay open to serve drinks etc to have with the food.

There is just so much in and around our gardens, woodlands, footpaths that is good to eat and free for everyone.

Lucie’s web address is

Glow worms

If anyone feels energetic later, it’s also a great time of year to spot Hambledon Hill glow worms. As darkness falls the females give their display on the stalks of grass tufts in the hollow above the inner rampart of the northwest quarter. Just remember it’s all too easy to come down the hill in the dark much quicker than you planned!
DCC Member Blackmore Vale

Try and make a date,

Best Wishes,    vince