Spring Beauties! The forgotten spring edible!
By Jennifer Sutherland Cline
So, what are Spring Beauties?
Beauty (Claytonia virginica L.) is part of the Purslane family.
Sometimes referred to as groundnut or fairy spuds, they are native to Eastern
North America, from the Rocky Mountains to the Atlantic Ocean. Mostly found in
deciduous forests, forest edges and meadows, It thrives in moist woods in rich
soil, wet to mesic soil conditions. They bloom from March to April, and the
seeds ripen in May. Each fertile flower produces an ovoid capsule containing
several seeds; this capsule is enclosed by the two persistent sepals. Like so
many tiny wildflowers, they tend not to survive in a dry spring and die back in
the hot summers. The species is hermaphrodite (has both male and female organs)
and is pollinated by butterflies, bees and other Insects. The delicate herbaceous
perennial springs from a thumb-sized, edible corm. A corm is a bulbo-tuber that
is a short, vertical, swollen underground plant stem. Unlike in bulbs, corm's
do not appear as visible rings when the corm is cut in half. It serves as a
storage organ that spring beauties use to survive winter or other adverse
conditions. For example, water chestnuts and Water lilies have corms.
use responsible & ethical
wildcrafting any medicinal plant. Each can do their part to ensure these
wonderful plants do not go extinct.
One of several recipes from the article:
Roasted Rosemary, Potato & Spring Beauties
1-part prepared spring beauties
2-parts cubed potatoes
Season with salt, pepper and dried or fresh rosemary
Add some melted butter or olive oil
Add some Parmesan Cheese (optional)
1. In large bowl - Toss or stir until potatoes and corms are coated well
2. Place on a baking sheet, be sure to spread evenly
3. Bake until crisp brown
4. Cool for 5-10 mins before serving
Jen Cline is the founder of Cline Apothecary and director of Sewanee School of Herbal Medicine, a center for herbal studies in Sewanee, Tennessee.
Jen seeks to connect community with botanical medicine by providing education and carefully crafted products. Over the years, Jen has transformed nature's wisdom into herbal formulas, combining science and tradition to create proprietary blends rooted in purity, potency, and integrity.
She believes this is a bridge that will empower our community to reclaim their health & our collective environment.