website to give thanks to is SeedRack.com and
without further adieu, I give you the following possibilities
of plants to grow and eat within your cold temperate
zone (-20 to -30 being the extremes). Enjoy:
Plants my zone 4
SeedRack.com says, "Here is a very interesting vine that is hardy to -22°F
and evergreen in zones 8 - 9. Red-purple flowers in spring followed by purple,
edible sausage-shaped fruits. It's 5" fleshy fruit pods split open when
ripe revealing a white gelatinous pulp with a unique tapioca-like flavor. Chocolate
vine grows well on a trellis and smells of white chocolate when the flowers are
in bloom. A fun gift for the chocolate lover who can‘t get enough of all
things chocolate or for the chocolate lover who for whatever sad reasons is not
presently eating chocolate and needs this sweet-smelling reminder."
SeedRack.com says, "Originating from the Southeast U.S., Pawpaw (Asimina triloba)
is the only temperate (cool-climate) member of a tropical family that includes
such delicious fruits as chirimoya, sweetsop and soursop. The fruit is the largest
edible fruit native to America, from 3" to 6" long and resembling a
short, fat banana or mango. It is very sweet and tastes like bananas with a hint
of pineapple and mango. Whereas the flowers are perfect (i.e., each flower is
both male and female), two or more plants are needed for fruit production as
pollen must come from a second plant to be effective.
triloba is usually 8 to 10 feet tall, and will
sucker, forming loose colonies. However, if
grown in the open, in a sunny location, the tree
will develop a single trunk, often reaching 25 feet
-- fruit production is also better. Its small size
and attractive cone shape make it suitable for residential
landscaping. Fall color, which is usually a soft,
butter-yellow, can be outstanding. The tree is virtually
disease and pest-free."
SeedRack.com says, "The
Dandelion is an herb, native to Southern Europe. It was brought by early settlers
to North America where it has become widely
naturalized. While the Dandelion can be a pesky weed in lawns and gardens, it
is also very versatile and can be put to good use. Young dandelion leaves are
used in salads, vegetables and soups. Dandelion flowerheads are used to make
wine. The roots, dried, roasted and ground, make a delicious drink. And the herb
is also used as a tonic. Easy to cultivate."
" Hops are a main ingredient in beer and lend beer
its distinctive bitter taste. Grow your own hops for
home brew and you'll have the freshest, tastiest hops
possible! The vine itself is highly ornamental, extremely
vigorous (can grow 20 feet or more in a single season)
and hardy in zones 4 - 8, meaning hops will grow back
each year without reseeding."
Water Lotus [Wiki]
SeedRack.com says, "The
lotus is one of the most beautiful and best known of
wetland plants, growing in still waters all over the
world. The species seen in southeast Asia is Nelumbo
nucifera. The lotus is a symbol for the Buddha and also
represents purity. It blooms briefly and represents the
power of the soul to rise from the muddy waters of the
lower realms of consciousness into the sunlight of a
better life. Seeds have been found that would still germinate
after 1,300 years.
Lotus are spectacular plants with vibrant blossoms
and luxuriant waxy-green foliage that cups upward.
They are revered in China as both sacred symbols and
edible food items. Lotus is one of the easiest plants
to care for."
SeedRack.com says, "High
quality, pre-stratified seed of American Ginseng (Panax
quinquefolius) ready for sowing. The root of this herbaceous
perennial is harvested for its well-known medicinal properties.
About 18" in height, white flowers appear from spring
to mid-summer and bright red berries follow. Prefers
moist soil and shady location. Roots require several
years to reach harvestable size. "
Perilla frutescens nankinensis
SeedRack.com says, "Purple
or Aka Shiso (Perilla) is a delightful, ornamental herb
that is used as a striking bedding plant and to make
Japanese dishes such as sushi and Kyoto pickles. The
leaves have a strong, pungent flavor suggestive of cilantro
or cloves. The purple to near-black leaves are wavy or
frilled at the edges. Perilla is a self-seeding annual
that will readily re-appear year after year. Grows to
about 30" in height, prefers a sunny location and
moist soil. Very happy on the bank of a stream or pond."
Annual (all zones)
I could only fine information on
Wikipedia on physalis alkekengi. But I guess
it's close enough.
SeedRack.com , "Chinese
lantern, Physalis franchetii, grows to two feet tall
and bears small, white flowers followed by large, balloon-like
husks in July and August. Inside each 2-inch long husk
is a small edible but tasteless scarlet fruit. The Chinese
lantern plant is valued for its inflated orange-red seed
coverings which resemble miniature Chinese lanterns.
For winter bouquets, cut the stems in fall just as the
lanterns turn color, remove the leaves and hang them,
right side up, to dry in a shady, airy place. Easy to
grow from seed."
Mary's Milk Thistle [Wiki]
"Don't dismiss this plant as just another thistle - it
is a striking and most attractive foliage plant with
flat rosettes of large, prickly leaves, most strikingly
lined and marbled with broad white veins - indeed variegation
probably not surpassed for beauty in any other plant
- and bearing large heads of sweet-scented, rose-purple
flowers. Not only that, but you can eat it: the roots
boiled, the flower-heads like Artichokes, and the leaves
in salads - which just leaves the prickles! This is indeed
an impressive plant with its 6 foot flower stalk and
white-streaked leaves. The annual or biennial plant is
easy to grow and has many uses. Said to have a powerful
regenerative effect on the liver."
Annual (all zones)
"Stevia is a remarkable plant that is used in many
parts of the world as a natural herbal sweetener.
In Japan, for example, about 40% of the sweetener
market is stevia-based. Stevia leaves are 30 times
sweeter than sugar but contain virtually no calories.
It is native to South America, where its use as a
sweetener has been known for at least 1,500 years.
In the U.S., due to pressure from the powerful sugar
lobby, Stevia is regulated by the FDA and until recently
could be offered only as a dietary supplement (or
skin care product) but not as a food additive or
sweetener. Stevia is a tender, perennial herb that
is usually grown as an annual but may be overwintered
indoors. Full sun to part shade, grows to a height
of about 30 inches."
Annual (all zones)
||Strawberry, Yellow Wonder [Wiki]
Frageria vesca 'Yellow Wonder'
"Sweet and tasty, these non-trailing Alpine strawberries
are great for planting in containers or along borders.
Very productive. And birds are less attracted to these
than to the red strawberries. Unique and well worth a
"Cattails can be found in marshes and wetlands on almost
every continent. Indeed, cattails are a familiar sight
along creeks, riverbanks and country roads througout
the world. They are easy to spot -- their distinctive
seedheads resemble tall, brown corn dogs atop sturdy
stems reaching up to 8 feet in height. Cattails add interest
to pond settings and make excellent dried cut flowers,
either alone or in mixed arrangements.
are a very important food for wildlife and are
supposedly quite edible and tasty for humans,
(Euell Gibbons devotes a whole chapter to Cattails
in his book, "Stalking the Wild Asparagus.").
Cattails require moist soil, such as the edge of a
pond, or can be grown in shallow water up to about
6" in depth. They are easy to grow in any climate
if given sufficient water, though they can become
invasive if not contained.
||American Cranberry [Wiki]
"The American Cranberry (Vaccinium macrocarpon) offers
tremendous potential for the home gardener. Contrary
to popular belief, cranberries do not require a bog or
wetland for successful culture. The plant is a low, spreading
evergreen with a fine texture. Pinkish flowers appear
in spring and are followed by the red fruit in the fall.
The small leaves can become purple or bronze in the winter.
Plant 2 feet apart for a solid ground cover or use in
hanging baskets and planters for a delicate cascading
effect. Plant in full sun or partial shade in acidic
soil. Protect from spring frosts for most consistent
yields. About 9" in height."
||Riverbank Grape [Wiki]
"Riverbank Grape is native to North America.and can be
found growing throughout a large area. The vine is extremely
cold hardy and easily survives temperatures as low as
40F below zero. The grapes are sweetly acidic and have
a lovely flavor when allowed to fully ripen on the vine
-- excellent for winemaking and jellies. A stunning small
vine, up to 15 or 20 feet, displaying beautiful autumn
colors. Highly valued by wildlife and perfect for naturalizing
woodland areas or along fences."
you know of any other types of edible plants that are
unusual and exotic and will grow in colder places like
Alaska, please let me know:
exotic rare unusual seedrack.com wikipedia
cold hardy alaska plants vegetables fruit root berries
Hops Sacred Water Lotus American Ginseng Purple Shiso
Chinese Lanterns St Mary's Milk Thistle Stevia
Yellow Wonder Strawberry Cattail American Cranberry Riverbank
Grape hardiness zone