Foraging with “Wildman” Steve Brill in Redding

Hunt for Wild Berries, Greens, and Mushrooms

in Private Woodlands

with Naturalist/Author “Wildman” Steve Brill

The native spice bush produces a berry that can be chopped fresh and used as a seasoning similar to allspice according to Wildman Steve Brill.

At 1:00 pm on Saturday, July 19, naturalist/author “Wildman” Steve Brill will lead one of his world-famous foraging tours of Private Woodlands in a tract of private woodlands in Redding, CT.

Fruit far surpassing anything available commercially fills the thickets around this forest in summertime. Now, they’re lined with large quantities of sweet, juicy blackberries, a fantastic species of red raspberry called the wineberry, and the season’s first blackberries. After picking these wonderful berries during the tour, many participants will forgo lunch and continue collecting.

Wild greens also thrive in fields and along trail edges. We’ll find lamb’s-quarters (a wild spinach), wood sorrel, sheep sorrel, poor man’s pepper, purslane, lady’s thumb, and Asiatic dayflower. In addition, we’ll find culinary and medicinal herbs such as black birch, yarrow, sassafras, and spicebush leaves.

Most roots go out of season by the start of May, but burdock root, which tastes like a combination of potato and artichoke, stays in season from spring to fall, and it grows in this tract too.

This is one of the best places for great numbers of the world’s most prized (and expensive) wild mushrooms. They include gourmet boletes, brittle russulas, chanterelles, black trumpets, and gigantic chicken mushrooms. On past tours, we’ve also found wonderful flavored parasol mushrooms, delicate tasting corals, meaty hygrophorus milky mushrooms, plus the delectable rooted oudemansiella, with an underground structure (not a true root) that snaps when you break it.

The 3-hour walking tour begins at 1:00 pm on Saturday, July 19, at the Branchville, CT, RR station. Please call (914) 835-2153 at least 24 hours ahead to reserve a place. The suggested donation is $20 for adults, $10 for children under 12. Nobody is ever turned away due to lack of funds.

For the 2014 tour calendar and additional info, visit


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