WHEELING, W.Va. (WTRF) — Known to be found only in the Appalachian mountains, there’s a hunt underway for a wild, smelly, edible plant known as ramps.
A ramp is part onion, part garlic, part leek, but it’s all in its own. It’s a West Virginia delicacy.Jim Adams, Wild Edible Plant Enthusiast, Wheeling Native
It’s the first wild edible to pop-up along country roads in spring. And its stalk forms the iconic, leafy-green (Easter themed) bunny ears.
We’ve had a few pounds this year because it’s been a good ramp season.Jim Adams, Wild Edible Plant Enthusiast, Wheeling Native
This harvest has gotten many families out stretching their legs from quarantine in search of this healthy jackpot.
People like to go for walks, it’s great exercise. You can typically find them in the woods. And, we have them all over our property, so it’s fun for us to do as a family.Jim Adams, Wild Edible Plant Enthusiast, Wheeling Native
They grow on the south-facing sunny side of a hill, in giant patches. But, as this wild delicacy ramps-up in popularity, you’re urged that if you go digging, harvest them sustainably.
They grow wild, so we don’t want to wipe out their entire species. We want them to live for ages. So, if you take a few from a bunch, enjoy those. Leave the rest for future generations.Jim Adams, Wild Edible Plant Enthusiast, Wheeling Native
Known to be high in nutrients, these West Virginian leeks can be eaten raw, sautéed, or even pickled.
And this Easter, the Mountaineer said the Wild and Wonderful side-dish has a spot at his dinner table.
Anything you can put a garlic, an onion, or a leek, you can substitute with a wild ramp.Jim Adams, Wild Edible Plant Enthusiast, Wheeling Native
You can eat the whole thing. The bulb, the stalk, and the leafy green. It’s good for you. High in Vitamin-C and delicious.
The wild plant enthusiast tells 7 News that the season for the wild mushrooms, Morels, is coming up in around 10 days.
When digging up ramps, you’re ask by U.S. Forest Service Guidelines to not pick more than 1/5 of a patch, and when moving soil, to replace the dirt so that invasive species don’t have opportunity to grow.
When picking wild edibles it’s important to note that you should bring along at least one expert who knows exactly what you’re looking for. Don’t eat anything you don’t know for sure.