Ground Elder (Aegopodium podagraria)

Ground Elder (Aegopodium podagraria)

January 08, 2018

Identification

Ground elder is a pale green plant with tiny white flowers on an umbel. Leaves are toothed, elliptic–ovate and usually groups of three. Basal leaf is blade broadly triangular, 2 times with 3 leaflets. The stem has a small half pipe or trough. Stem leaves are 3-lobed.

Habitat

Woodlands, hedgerows, gardens, graveyards, generally close to human habitation.

Foraging season

The first young ground elder plants can be found in May or even April in Finland. If you have a patch of ground elder keep cutting it back and young fresh leaves will grow back in no time. 

Nutritional values

This superweed contains iron, magnesium and vitamin C.

Use

The young translucent leaves are best for salads and the slightly older leaves can be cooked like spinach. Ground elder has a mild, carrot-like and parsley-like flavour and scent, making it a natural partner for vegetables and fish, and is good as a pot herb or salad ingredient. It can be used in salads, omelettes, pesto, pizza, savoury pies etc. Ground elder is particularly suitable in foods with basil, goat cheese and halloumi.

An interesting fact is that this plant can be effective in controlling soil erosion.

To be noted

Ground elder is also known by several other names like Bishop’s weed and goutweed. Be careful and do not confuse this plant with the poisonous Hemlock (Conium maculatum).

 

In addition to our Goutweed Crush, also our Nettle Pesto and Fine Nettle Herb Salt contain wild ground elder.

 

Ground elder Helsinki Wildfoods foraging

Photos: Aino Huotari, Anna Nyman

Comments

linda

linda said:

Wonder

Leave a comment!

Please note: comments must be approved before they are published.