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Wild foraging of native and non native plants assists in understanding how plants travel the planet and trains the eye to know which plants are edible or not. Although some plants are considered weeds, they can also provide medicinal value that we can benefit from. Creating an herbarium is a great way to learn about plants and share your knowledge or just to get your hands dirty. S.O.S. Herbarium is a collection of dried plant specimens that are preserved for identification and collected during a plant walk in your community. For anyone unfamiliar with plant identification it’s recommended that you be careful of any harmful species such as poison ivy by consulting a plant ID guide and online resources specific to your bioregion. It’s also good to know the local regulations for what can be legally harvested in the city and state parks in your area.

ACTION STEPS 1 - Gather materials for plant collecting (plant press, plastic bags, trowel, small notebook, tags, camera)

8 - Make a press with plywood and newspaper, strap tightly with buckles

2 - Collect good representatives of species (with leaves, stems, flowers, seeds, roots)

9 - Delicate flowers can be laid out on tissue paper

3 - Take no more than ten at at time to really learn about each species and properly press them

11 - Use water soluble glue to attach to the paper

4 - If collecting small plants, group them on one page 5 - Collect plants during dry conditions, mid-morning, after dew has dried before heat of the day 6 - Record date collection number, location, habitat, and special characteristics 7 - Take photographs of your species habitat

10 - After completely dry, mount plants on thick paper 12 - Write plant information on the paper at the bottom 13 - Store finished papers with plants in storage box 14 - Collect as many as you want and share with others You can easily make a plant press with spare plywood and newspaper, and a vice or a belt strap that can wrap around your press. You’ll need two pieces of plywood and a sturdy surface in a shady cool spot to press each specimen. see resources



S.O.S. Action Guide  

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