Edible roots and tubers of some terrestrial, aquatic and coastal wild plants, their preparation and eating during survival in an emergency.

The roots and tubers of edible wild plants are an invaluable source of food for those in distress or in extreme situations. They have a lot of nutrients, especially starch. All roots and tubers should be carefully prepared.. 

Edible roots and tubers of some terrestrial, aquatic and coastal wild plants, their preparation and eating during survival in an emergency.

The highest starch content in the roots and kluyuny falls in the period from autumn to spring. In the spring, part of the starch turns into sugar to provide new growth. Some edible roots and tubers can be up to several centimeters thick and more than a meter long..

, if you fry them and crush or grind. Others, such as the winged butterfly, can be crushed or ground to use as flour.

Comfrey root is especially valuable. There is so much starch in it that after boiling, the solution becomes like gypsum, which makes it suitable for making tires for fractures of the extremities. It is better to cook all root vegetables before eating, as some raw foods are dangerous. Most roots should be prepared so that they become soft enough and can be eaten. Peel the root crop, rinse in clean water and cook until it becomes soft. Some potato-like tubers contain the bulk of their vitamins and minerals near the surface, so do not peel them. Roots and tubers will cook faster if they are first diced. With a sharp stick, try the readiness of root crops, if it is easily stuck, then they are ready.

Edible roots and tubers of land plants.

Highlander, buckwheat.

It has an average height of 30-60 cm, narrow triangular leaves and a small spike of pink or white flowers. Grows in grassy and wooded places, climbs far north. Soak the roots to get rid of bitterness, then fry.

Claytonia tuberous.

It has an average height of 15-30 cm, a pair of oval leaves on a long scabbard in the middle of the stem and small white or pink flowers. It grows in meadows, rocky and sandy places. With a sharp stick, dig up the tubers, peel them and cook. Young leaves are edible, contain vitamins A and C.

Goose cinquefoil.

A small creeping plant with a silver-white lower surface of segmented leaves and single (not in inflorescences) five-petalled yellow flowers. Grows in humid places. The fleshy roots are edible, but it is better to cook them. Apply infusion of leaves inside for digestive problems.


It is a branching plant up to 30-60 cm tall, with small oval leaves in opposite pairs and greenish-cream flowers. It grows in grassy, ​​sandy, shrubby places. Boiled root resembles carrots to taste.

Parsnip wild.

This spiny plant on average has a height of 1 meter, the leaves are jagged, dense yellow heads of small flowers. Grows in wasteland and grassy places. The roots are eaten raw and boiled.

Comfrey medicinal (pharmacy).

A coarse plant covered with hair up to 1 meter high, with pointed leaves tapering to the stem, and clusters of cream or pinkish-lilac flowers. Grows in ditches, ditches and moist places. The roots are eaten raw or boiled. Other parts have medical use..


It reaches an average of 60-90 cm, has long leaves, similar to grass, smoothly adjacent to the stem, and large purple single flowers, similar to dandelion flowers. Grows on dry wastelands. Tuberous root and young leaves are eaten boiled.

Woolen pewter.

It is a hairy creeping plant with pinkish flowers and a yellow root that is eaten raw or boiled. Widely distributed in the northern American tundra. Almost all other types of tax collectors are poisonous..

Umbrella poultry.

It grows on average up to 10-30 cm, grass-like leaves have a white main vein and go from the root, the flowers are white, with six petals, green stripes on the petals. Grows in grassy areas. The root is dangerous in its raw form, it must be prepared. Do not eat other parts of the plant.

Wild onions.

It is found almost everywhere, it is easy to recognize by its characteristic smell. Long, grass-like leaves emerge from the very base of the plant. At the top of the stem is a head made of six-petalled pink, purplish or white flowers. Edible bulb can be very deep.

Aronik spotted.

It grows up to 15-40 cm, has dark green sagittate, sometimes with dark spots, leaves and a purple finger-shaped flowering organ enclosed in a pale leafy hood, from which red berries appear. Grows in shaded and wooded areas in Eurasia. The root is dangerous in its raw form, it must be prepared. Do not eat other parts.

Wild boar peanuts.

It is found in moist places in North America. Climbing plant with a thin stalk, light green oval leaves and flowers from white to purple tones. Remove each seed from the brown seed box (underground) and cook.

American peanuts.

A small climbing plant with oval, pointed light green leaves and flowers from red-brown to brownish tones. Grows in moist, usually wooded places in North America. Peel small tubers, then fry or cook.

Earthen Pear, Jerusalem artichoke.

Reminiscent of sunflower, this is a very tall, hairy plant with long, coarse oval leaves and large yellow disc-shaped flowers. Widely distributed throughout the world. Cooked tubers are extremely tasty. Do not clean them so as not to lose the nutritional value of the product.

Edible roots and tubers of aquatic and coastal plants.


It has small dimensions, heart-shaped leaves with long legs and a pin-like flowering organ surrounded by a leaf-shaped hood, pale inside, from which red berries appear. It always grows near the water. The roots are dangerous, they must be prepared. Do not eat other parts.


It is an aquatic plant, an average of 30-90 cm tall. The leaves are large, their shape can be from narrow to wide swept, and sometimes banded under water. Flowers have three rounded petals. Always grows in fresh water. The tubers are edible raw, but cooked much tastier.

Water nut.

It is an aquatic plant with diamond-shaped floating and branching underwater leaves. Widely distributed in the fresh waters of Eurasia. Hard gray seeds 2.5 cm in diameter, with horns, edible raw and fried.

Based on the book Complete Survival Guide for Extreme Situations, in the Wild, on Land and at Sea.
John Wiseman.

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