Edible and Medicinal Weed Distribution Maps
In writing The Weed Forager’s Handbook, we aimed to make the contents over 90% relevant to over 90% of the population. Every one of our top 20 weeds are available in or around Adelaide, Canberra, Hobart, Melbourne, Perth and Sydney. Every one except angled onion is available in Brisbane. Only few are available in Darwin, Cairns and other parts of the tropics, as most of the weeds are found in subtropical and temperate climates only. You can check out the distribution maps below for clarity.
Our Top 20 Weeds
Here’s the distribution maps from the top 20 weeds in the book.
Amaranth (Amaranthus species)
There are almost 30 species represented above, including natives. See the AVH site for a detailed species breakdown.
Angled Onion (Allium triquetrum)
Blackberry (Rubus fruticosus aggregate)
The list of blackberry species includes (number of records in brackets): Rubus anglocandicans (1439), Rubus cissburiensis (40), Rubus discolor (14), Rubus fruticosus (12), Rubus leightonii (59), Rubus leucostachys (478), Rubus polyanthemus (139), Rubus ulmifolius (295) and Rubus vestitus (51).
Blackberry Nightshade (Solanum nigrum)
Also, here’s the close relative American nightshade (Solanum americanum)
Chickweed (Stellaria media)
Cleavers (Galium aparine)
Dandelion (Taraxacum officinale)
Note: dandelion is far more widely distributed in Victoria than this map would suggest. It’s due to some classification issues, we believe, that the records don’t show up.
Fat Hen (Chenopodium album)
Fennel (Foeniculum vulgare)
Mallows (Malva parviflora and relatives)
There are 15 species represented above, including natives. See the AVH site for a detailed species breakdown.
Nasturtium (Tropaeolum majus)
Nettle (Urtica urens)
Oxalis (Oxalis species)
There are over 40 species represented above, including natives. See the AVH site for a detailed species breakdown.
Common Plantain (Plantago lanceolata)
Buckshorn Plantain (Plantago coronupus)
Greater Plantain (Plantago major)
Prickly Pear (Opuntia ficus-indica)
… and here’s the other prickly pears (everything in the Opuntia genus) many of which can be used interchangeably:
Purslane (Portulaca oleracea)
Salsify (Tragopogon porrifolius)
Sow Thistle (Sonchus oleraceus)
Wild Lettuce (Lactuca serriola)
The distribution maps are courtesy of The Council of Heads of Australasian Herbaria (2012) Australia’s Virtual Herbarium. http://avh.chah.org.au. [Accessed September 2012], and are released under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Australia licence.
Thanks AVH! Visit the Virtual Herbarium to find out what other plants are in your neck of the woods.