A Woodland Walk with your Missoula, Montana Florist
Searching for Fall Flora and Greenery
As the colors around us change, the air grows colder, and we see the golden glow of autumn, we are spending as much time as possible in the vast beauty of our Montana backyard. If you have a free evening or weekend, we invite you to join us on our woodland journey. Use this as a guide from your Missoula, Montana florist to start your own foraging practice. As always, though, be sure to follow ethical foraging practices that honor the land.
When we walk with intention to forage the forest’s abundance, we keep our eyes our for a few specific beauties: rowan berries, snowberries, and elderberries.
These vibrant orange berries are fall and winter showstopper, sitting in perfect juxtaposition to the landscape in transition. The color makes these berries easy to spot and their abundance in fall means they are perfect to harvest. Whether incorporating rowan berries into your cooking or adding them to your next arrangement, they are sure to be a harbinger of this year’s abundance. Harvesting these after the first frost improves the taste of these berries, which are incredibly bitter when eaten raw.
As medicine, herbalists use rowan berries for stomach ailments, while the leaves can treat symptoms associated with asthmas, colds, and sore eyes. Be mindful that these berries are astringent and can cause irritation if taken in great quantities.
The pure white of snowberries stand out against the muted tones of fall, offering their beauty to us in clusters. Just like rowan berries, snowberries can be found while walking in the neighborhood or on the trail. Keep an alert eye and wait for these to catch your attention. In addition to their beauty, snowberries offer healing properties and their essence can be important in setting intentions for the autumn season.
Be careful not to eat snowberries raw as they contain toxic saponins, however, they can be eaten and used after being cooked. In particular, they are useful for skin conditions. Additionally, their essence will lift mood, lessen dark energies, and provide a fresh, new perspective, which is perfect for this season of change.
Elderberries add so much to the vibrancy of autumn with their red stems and blue berries. Find elderberries while spending time in the urban nature of your town or while on your morning hike. Unlike rowan berries and snowberries, elderberries can be eaten without being cooked. Still, most recommend cooking the berry to better the taste and increase digestibility. Elderberries are particularly useful as we enter the colder months since they stimulate the body’s immune system.
Additionally, as the days grow darker, elderberries can combat sinking into the night. They will provide you with light and warmth to forge ahead in the world, using your light within.
Continue foraging with your Missoula, Montana florist
There are many fall blooms to be found on the trails in Western Montana, too. Keep a look out for these wildflower beauties during your evening hike. Taking this time in autumn to appreciate the changing colors and the cycle of life can prepare us for the coming winter. Your foraged goodies could be part of your next arrangement, wreath, or meal to showcase the symbolic beauty of autumn and the harvest.