Flower of the Day: Ramps

aka wild leek; Alium tricoccum; Liliaceae (lily family)

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When I was growing up ramps were a delicacy mostly known to and eaten by poor people who lived and foraged in the Appalachians. Nowadays ramps are a delicacy loved by chefs and gourmets and trend-chasers, hard to avoid if you like that kind of restaurant (I do).  You can also find them at farmers’ markets, where you’ll pay a bundle for something once considered weeds.

I think they taste awful, like slowly sinking in a vat of onions in a nightmare and you can’t scream for help.

Whatever floats your boat.  The problem now is that the plants are in danger of being over-foraged.  Interesting article in the New York Times.  Remember that “sustainable” goes with “local” and “seasonal”.

These pictures were taken in a protected area, by the way.

Each plant bears a single stem and flower about two months after the emergent foliage has died away.  Here’s what you’ll see of the plants in early spring:

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