Book Notification

Samuel Thayer Books In Order

Book links take you to Amazon. As an Amazon Associate I earn money from qualifying purchases.

Publication Order of Non-Fiction Books

The Forager's Harvest (2006)Description / Buy at Amazon
Nature's Garden (2010)Description / Buy at Amazon
Incredible Wild Edibles (2017)Description / Buy at Amazon
Sam Thayer's Field Guide to Edible Wild Plants (2023)Description / Buy at Amazon

Samuel Thayer is an American author and wild food forager. He is also a self-taught natural historian and the founder of Foreger’s Harvest. Samuel was born in Wausau, Wisconsin, and spent his childhood in Madison, where he graduated from Madison East Highscool in 1994. He is a self-published author of The Nature’s Garden: A Guide to Identifying, Harvesting, and Preparing Edible Wild Plants; The Forager’s Harvest: A Guide to Identifying, Harvesting, and Preparing Edible Wild Plants and Incredible Wild Edibles: 36 Plants That Can Change Your Life.
Thayer has won three awards for his book Nature’s Garden, including Midwest Book Awards (2006), Midwest Book Awards (2010), and second place for the 2011 Benjamin Franklin Award. His book The Foragers Harvest won the IPPY Book Award Midwest Book Award and was a finalist for the USA Book News Best Books in 2007. He is a resident of Northwestern Wisconsin and lives with his wife and their three children. Besides speaking and writing, Samuel Thayer is also a wild rice harvester, a syrup producer, and a small organic orchard owner. When not foraging, you will find him bird watching, studying reptiles, amphibians, and mammals.

Samuel Thayer’s The Forager’s Harvest guide offers an in-depth exploration of 32 of North America’s most common and delicious edible wild plants. It’s a treasure trove of knowledge for anyone interested in foraging, providing meticulous details on plant identification, habitats, harvesting times, usable parts, preparation methods, culinary uses, and insights into the plants’ ecology, conservation, and cultural history.

The book opens with a thorough discussion of general foraging topics. These include essential guidelines on safe identification and sampling practices, a breakdown of how to harvest plant parts like leaves, roots, and seeds, and best practices for processing and storing foraged goods. It also addresses the gaps and oversights commonly found in foraging literature, offering fresh perspectives and valuable information often overlooked.

The book’s heart is devoted to 32 detailed chapters, each focusing on a specific plant. Interestingly, Thayer sometimes groups closely related plants, providing even more value. Each chapter is rich with high-quality color photographs of the plants and their potential lookalikes, making identification easier and more accurate. Thayer delves into the nitty-gritty of each plant, highlighting key traits for identification and discussing its habitat and range.

What sets this book apart is its reliance on the author’s experiences in foraging. While Thayer does reference existing literature where relevant, his firsthand accounts of harvesting, preparing, eating, and storing each plant provide a unique and practical perspective. This approach is relatively rare in foraging literature, and Thayer’s depth of personal insight adds authenticity and practicality that are invaluable for novice and experienced foragers.

In summary, this guide is not just a list of edible plants; it’s a comprehensive resource that combines practical advice, personal insights, and a deep respect for the natural world. It’s an essential read for anyone interested in the art and science of foraging, offering a wealth of knowledge that is both educational and engaging.

Thayer’s expertise shines through in the detailed content he provides. The book is filled with vivid pictures and meticulous descriptions of various plants, making it easy for readers to identify them in the wild. The author goes beyond mere identification; he explains the best times and methods for harvesting different parts of these plants and innovative ways they can be prepared and used in cooking.

For those already acquainted with wild plants, “Nature’s Garden” offers a delightful revelation—many of the species featured are recognizable and unexpectedly edible. This discovery aspect adds an extra layer of excitement for seasoned plant enthusiasts.
The book is well-structured and packed with information, making it a valuable resource for beginners and experienced foragers. What makes Thayer’s writing particularly engaging is his ability to blend instructional content with a touch of humor. His style is approachable and enjoyable, transforming what could be a dry subject into a lively and captivating read.

Nature’s Garden is more than just a foraging guide; it reflects Samuel Thayer’s passion and expertise in wild foods. His ability to convey complex information in an accessible and entertaining manner makes this book a must-read for anyone interested in exploring the natural bounty of North America’s landscapes.

Samuel Thayer’s book is highly recommended for anyone interested in growing or cooking food. This book isn’t an exhaustive guide to all edible wild foods; it focuses on foods that Thayer has found delicious. His approach is refreshingly candid. Thayer doesn’t shy away from telling readers which parts of a plant are delectable and not worth the effort. This honesty, combined with his expertise, makes the book an invaluable resource for both novice and experienced foragers alike.

Incredible Wild Edibles: 36 Plants That Can Change Your Life is Samuel Thayer’s third contribution to the world of foraging literature, following his acclaimed works “The Forager’s Harvest” (2006) and “Nature’s Garden” (2010). It sets the bar high, reinforcing Thayer’s reputation for creating some of North America’s most detailed and comprehensive foraging guides.

The book dives into a diverse range of edible wild plants, encompassing a variety of greens, fruits, nuts, starchy roots, and even delving into the process of maple syrup production. Thayer’s selection includes widespread plants across North America, highlighting those that are more region-specific, with several plants unique to the southeastern states and a handful found exclusively in the West.

Thayer’s inclusion of many related species makes the Incredible Wild Edibles stand out. This approach expands the book’s utility beyond the 36 plants headlined in its title, offering a broader exploration and understanding of North America’s diverse edible flora.
Samuel Thayer’s commitment to thorough research, combined with his engaging writing style, makes “Incredible Wild Edibles” not just a guide but a compelling read for anyone interested in deepening their knowledge of foraging and the natural world. Whether you are a seasoned forager or a curious beginner, this book offers information that extends well beyond the basics of identifying and harvesting wild edibles.

Book Series In Order » Authors » Samuel Thayer

Leave a Reply