Wild Seeds You Can Grow in a Jar and Eat as Sprouts

Years ago, circa 1986, I used to teach ‘Biogenic Nutrition’. Don’t ask, it was a crazy diet and I was young and chasing enlightenment. Ah, the folly of youth.

Back then I taught people how to ferment seed cheeses and how to sprout seeds in jars in their kitchens, along with following a raw vegetarian diet.

Recently a number of folks have been asking me if there are any wild plant seeds they can sprout for wellbeing.

So before I give you a short list of the ones I do know you can sprout, I need to make something clear.

The very nature of sprouting a seed, means you deprive the plant of being able to reproduce. So if you are going to do this, then please only take the seeds of 1 in 20.

Meaning, only take the seeds heads from one plant for every 20 plants of the same species that you find.

And if you can’t find twenty plants. Don’t harvest the seeds!!!

Be a responsible forager.

And yes, there are no photos.

Take some initiative and buy a wildflower guide. Be your own authority.

IMPORTANT: Not all wild plants produce edible seeds. Only some do. If a wild plant produces edible seed, leaf and stem, then you can consider that it is safe to sprout the seeds.

Some seeds require specific temperatures and light as well as a long germination period. So you are going to have to experiment.

I’m sure there are plenty more, so this is only a partial list to get you started.

  • Balsam, Himalayan: Impatiens glandulifera
  • Bittercress, Hairy: Cardamine hirsuta
  • Buckwheat: Fagopyrum esculentum (do not eat the husk)
  • Charlock: Sinapis arvensis
  • Cleavers: Galium aparine
  • Clover, Red: Trifolium pratense
  • Cress, Swine: Lepidium coronopus
  • Dandelion: Taraxacum spp.
  • Fat Hen: Chenopodium album
  • Fennel, Wild: Foeniculum vulgare
  • Flixweed: Descurainia sophia
  • Goosefoot, Red: Chenopodium rubrum
  • Horseradish: Armoracia rusticana
  • Medick, Black: Medicago lupulina
  • Mustard, White: Sinapis alba
  • Nettle, Stinging: Urtica dioica
  • Pennycress, Field: Thlaspi arvense
  • Plantain, Broadleaf: Plantago major
  • Thistle, Creeping: Cirsium arvense
  • Thistle, Marsh: Cirsium palustre
  • Thistle, Milk: Silybum marianum
  • Thistle, Spear: Cirsium vulgare
  • Watercress: Nasturtium officinale

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  1. Hi Robin

    Really inspiring article, thanks very much. There’ll be an abundance of Fat Hen seed on my allotment and I look forward to trying the Jack by the Hedge, as they ripen, as they’ll be delicious sprouted. Am wondering about Lady’s Mantle and Salsify?

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