Wild Food Plants
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Charlock is extremely common on the edges of arable fields. It's an annual, but in the recent milder winters in England, it is starting to over-winter, and can therefore be picked when there's not a lot else around.
It's quite OK to eat, but nothing exciting. Raw, the young leaves and flower buds are quite acceptable in a mixed salad. The older leaves are all quite rough with bristly hairs. I suppose you'd not notice this much in a mixed salad, but we find a lot more pleasant plants around.
You can cook it, when the hairy nature goes, and use it as a green vegetable. Pleasant and quite eatable, but nothing really exciting.
There are several very similar plants such as white mustard which can be eaten in the same way.
Photo taken 9th May 2008
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