Sunday, May 1, 2011


For many of us fiddleheads are a sure sign of spring...
and you know times have changed when a whole bunch of kids, including high school aged kids, just stares at you when you try and explain what a fiddle is....really? They've never heard of a fiddle? I'm feeling really old these days. When I said, you know, like a violin, one girl asked, 'Then why don't they just call them violin heads?'

Anyway, fiddleheads are what ferns look like before they unfurl into their summer glory. Some have a brownish wispy covering, some look quite prickly and all have the shape of the 'fiddle head.' Some, like the ostrich fern, are edible but most are not very tasty which is why some people try them and hate them and others can be downright toxic. The ones you can buy are pretty stale and unless you watch a patch for a year to see which kind they are you may be out of luck. It is not wise to eat a fern, fiddlehead or not, that you are unsure of. The ones pictured above are NOT ostrich ferns and are not edible.

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