Glynwood Ramp Flyer 4.22.indd


1 Allium tricoccum is the plant we call a ramp, also known as a wild leek, wild onion, or garlic of the woods in French-Canadian (“ail des bois”). As the season’s first greens, ramps are sought-after and celebrated for their potent flavor and ephemeral nature. Once considered a tonic after the end of a long winter without fresh vegetables, the emergence of ramps heralds the start of the growing season. Ramps grow in moist, forested areas throughout the eastern United States and Canada. It takes several years for a ramp to fully mature! life cycle of A rAmp: Ramps are a beloved part of our regional flora and cuisine. Foraging wild edibles • In the springtime, ramp leaves emerge from a bulb in the soil. connects us to our local landscape and, in parts of the Hudson Valley, ramps still grow abundantly. In other regions, ramp patches have been depleted by Over the next few years the ramp will grow in spring, then die back in summer • over-harvesting. They are protected in Quebec, banned from harvesting in and return to dormancy during winter. Great Smoky Mountain National Park (Tennessee and North Carolina), and When a ramp reaches maturity, the leaves die back in summer and the plant • given “special concern” status in Maine, Rhode Island and Tennessee. sends up a shoot with a cluster of small white flowers, producing small green While we are lucky to still enjoy a bounty of ramps in this region, anecdotal pods that open to reveal shiny black seeds. observations suggest that the number of wild ramps has begun to diminish here. • The seeds drop to the ground, destined to become new ramps... So, as we celebrate the ramp and all it represents, it’s time to start thinking about ensuring the long-term enjoyment of ramps. • But not so quickly! These seeds can take over a year to germinate: they require cold after a warm spell to come out of dormancy (so it can take a winter, then summer, and another winter to “wake” them). Glynwood’s mission is to ensure that farming thrives in the Hudson Valley. for the • Once these plants begin to grow from seed, it takes five to seven years As a sponsor of Ramp Fest 2015 at Basilica Hudson, we are celebrating the culinary plant to reach maturity and produce its own seeds. pleasures of ramps while reiterating the importance of harvesting sustainably to • As they grow toward maturity, ramp bulbs can also multiply (like garlic!). prolong their bounty in the wild.

2 Even low levels of harvesting can have lasting effects on ramp population, which calls for a change in how we harvest and consume ramps. Grow your own rAmps! HArvest wild rAmps sust AinAbly: We can continue to enjoy ramps while allowing them to proliferate in the wild: The digging of whole ramps reduces ramp population and prevents reproduction. they can be cultivated, either by growing plants from seed or by transplanting bulbs. A seven-year study by the University of Tennessee concluded that a sustainable rate The following nurseries will ship transplantable ramps propagated from seed: 10% once every of harvest when digging whole ramp plants from a given patch is only 10 years. We advise against digging ramps with their bulbs until we have more ’s GArden AmAndA AmericAn nA tive nursery definitive research to support sustainable foraging. Springwater, NY Quakertown, PA Fortunately, it is not necessary to use the entire plant to enjoy it. Several botanists 585.669.2275 855.752.6862 and wild food enthusiasts suggest harvesting only the ramp’s leaves, with some recommending taking only one of the two leaves per plant – leaving the rest of For more information, Project Native and Edible Berkshires, two organizations the plant to photosynthesize. based in Western Massachusetts, provide extensive information on foraging purcHAse sust AinAbly HArvested rAmps: ramps sustainably. If you buy ramps, ask your vendor to consider changing their practices to those described above, with the understanding that we will need to fairly compensate responsible harvesters for maintaining the growth of ramps in our region. Avoid ordering or eating dishes at restaurants that include ramp bulbs. Glynwood’s mission is to ensure that farming thrives in the Hudson Valley.

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