Hunt for wild foods with naturalist Steve Brill

mushrooms“Wildman” Steve Brill will lead one of his famous foraging tours on the grounds of All-Wright Acres Farm in Bethlehem, Saturday, Sept. 6.

The 9 a.m. tour will start at 60 Robert Leather Road and Brill will be assisted by his 10-year-old daughter, Violet, who is also a foraging expert.

Thanks to its varied habitats and combination of native and introduced species, this farm is overflowing with wild food.

If the week has been rainy, the mushrooming should be excellent. Brill said participants may find various puffball species, chicken mushrooms, field mushrooms, and ringless honey mushrooms, among others.

Many common wild greens will be found. Participants will hunt for lamb’s-quarters (a wild spinach), sour wood sorrel and sheep sorrel, spicy poor man’s pepper, mild lady’s thumb, and string bean-flavored Asiatic dayflower.

Brill said the event will also cover culinary and medicinal herbs such as burdock, sassafras, and common spicebush. The latter  bears oblong red berries that make a fantastic, allspice-like seasoning.

 “We’ll also look for hawthorn berries, related to apples, and with a similar flavor. The fruit of the hackberry tree, on the other hand, tastes like the candy coating of M&M’s,” he said.

“In addition, we’ll be looking for all the poisonous wild plants that grow on the farm. Sadly, two of the goats that live there were killed by something they ate, and we’d very much like to identify the culprits and have them removed!”

This two-hour walking tour is expected to run two hours and the suggested donation is $20 for adults and $10 for kids under 12.

Call 914-835-2153 at least 24 hours in advance to reserve a place. For a 2014 tour calendar and additional information, visit or call Brill at 914-835-2153.

To reach All-Wright Acres Farm, call 203-405-6394.

Linda Tuccio-Koonz