Bay Area Hiker: Edible Plants
Edible Plants
Let me start with a disclaimer that you should never eat a plant because I say it's edible. There is no room for mistakes! If you're interested in foraging, go on a plant identification field trip with an expert from a local preserve or college. Then learn what to do with the plants. Not all parts of plants are always edible; some are edible only when cooked, etc. My two favorite books are The Flavors of Home: a Guide to Wild Edible Plants of the San Francisco Bay Area by Margrit Roos-Collins (order this book from, and Edible and Poisonous Plants of Northern California by James Wiltens (order this book from Both these books are invaluable.
Salal (Gaultheria shallon), summer, Hammond Road, Big Basin State Park

Salmonberry photo
Salmonberry (Rubus spectabilis), spring, Estero Trail, Point Reyes National Seashore

Pear (Pyrus communis), autumn, Samuel P. Taylor State Park

Persimmon (Diospyros), autumn, Ragle Ranch Regional Park

Olive, (Olea), spring, Ridgeline Trail, Pleasanton Ridge Regional Park

Arastradero Lake, Arastradero Preserve

Blackberries and blossoms
Blackberries and blossoms, Huckleberry Path, Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve

Fig tree
Fig tree, Deer Island Open Space Preserve
California hazelnut (Corylus cornuta ssp. californica), summer, Pomponio Trail, Memorial County Park
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Thimbleberry (Rubus parviflorus), summer, Año Nuevo Trail, Butano State Park
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Pomegranate (Punica granatum), autumn, Olompali State Park

Manzanita (Arctostaphylos) berries, autumn, Almaden Quicksilver County Park
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Sweet Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare), Burleigh Murray Ranch State Park

Rosehip, autumn, Dry Creek Trail, Garin Regional Park

Curly dock
Curly dock, (Rumex crispus), autumn, Alpine Lake, Skyline Ridge Open Space Preserve
Plum (Prunus), summer, Seven Springs Trail, Fremont Older Open Space Preserve

Wood strawberry (Fragaria vesca), late spring, Soda Gulch Trail, Purisima Creek Redwoods Open Space Preserve

Huckleberry Evergreen Huckleberry (Vaccinium ovatum), autumn, Huckleberry Path, Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve
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Gooseberry (Ribes), summer, Huckleberry Botanic Regional Preserve