How to Identify Wild Edible Red Clover (Trifolium pratense)

Below is the first page from the Wild Edible Plant of the Month Club ID Sheet for Red Clover, which is a fantastic and easy to identify wild edible plant available across all of North America.

First Page of the Wild Edible Plant of the Month Club ID Sheet for Red Clover (Trifolium pratense)

Contrary to what the name suggests, the flowers of the Red Clover are not red.  They range from white (rare) and light pink to magenta and purple.  Brought from Europe as fodder for livestock, the Red Clover is a beautiful plant when in bloom.  It is the state flower of Vermont and the national flower of Denmark.

Steeped (tea pun intended) with a rich herbal history in treating ailments related to the skin and respiratory tract, I can remember being excited to experiment with Red Clover as natural treatment for Psoriasis, which I have had since the age of 10.  I don’t blame its efficacy, but rather my lack of ancestral knowledge, for its failure to clear my skin.  Regardless, I do enjoy the flowers (both fresh and dried) steeped in hot water to make a mild tea.  I firmly believe that a cup of wild tea a day helps to keep the doctor away. (Note: I am not a doctor, nor am I qualified to offer medical advice. A consult with a holistic-minded physician is advised before attempting to use wild plants as medicine.)

Although edible, I am not a fan of the leaves.  The flowers, however, are very tasty and are one of the more versatile wild ingredients I’ve ever used.  I’m always experimenting with new ways to use them.  Their mildly sweet flavor makes them a fine addition to almost any food.  From oatmeal and smoothies to stews and bread, I’ve yet to find a dish to which they cannot be added as a healthy and nutritious companion.

Like learning how identify & cook with Wild Edible Plants? Consider joining us over at http://www.wildedibleplantofthemonth.com. Download the FREE FORAGING CALENDAR by clicking the link below.

Remember, it’s not IF but WHEN,

Creek

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