Foraging & Feasting with Dina Falconi

Download the mp3 here 

The ideal introduction to plants, herbs and “weeds” would be to have a grandmother (or grandfather) take us by the hand through the fields and woods from an early age.

In these “modern” times, few of us have that experience. Our guest on this installment of, Dina Falcone, certainly didn’t.

Dina grew up in New York City’s East Village in the 1970s, an urban jungle I can tell you from personal experience that made the Wild West look tame by comparison.

Without introduction to plants from an elder, the next best guide is a good herbal.

What makes a good herbal?

At least five things.

A good herbal:

1. Represents the plants clearly and accurately so you can recognize them easily in the field

2. Shows a plant in all its stages of growth so you can identify it through the seasons

3. Focuses on common, useful plants you’re most likely to find in your local environment

4. Addresses the positive and negative aspects of each plant.  (Few plants are safe and beneficial in all their parts.)

5. Teaches you how to bring the plants into your kitchen and exactly what to do to make a delicious meal of them

Dina’s book “A Field Guide & Wild Food Cookbook,” illustrated by Wendy Hollender, does all these things.

In this interview, we learn how a city girl became an herbalist and how this singular herbal came into being.

Additional resources: 

Website for the book



– Ken McCarthy