It’s all covered in dog piss, and other reasons why foraging is a terrible idea

THINK you’re going to make some lovely, organic pesto from that wild garlic you foraged? You won’t, because it will have the added ingredient of dog urine. Here are some other reasons:

You don’t know what you’re doing

You got a trug basket and a book about foraging for Christmas, which you think makes you a cross between Nigella Lawson and Bear Grylls. Unfortunately, the pictures in the book are shit, you can’t tell the difference between plants and you end up with agonising stomach ache after eating dandelion soup, which was horrible anyway.

It takes f**king ages

You imagine that the natural abundance of nature will provide you with a delicious feast within minutes of leaving your door. Unfortunately, you are wrong and you’ll find yourself five miles from home on foot having picked six hawthorn flowers and stung your hands on a lot of nettles.

A farmer will go mental at you

Despite its reputation for being bucolic and tranquil, the British countryside is actually jealously guarded by angry fascists with no compunction about bellowing at you to get off their land. It’s probably not wise to argue with a man who sees death as part of nature’s brutal plan and is carrying a f**king shotgun.

It’s all covered in dog piss

Even if you think you’ve walked far enough from the path to pick something a dog won’t have been near, you’re wrong. They piss on everything. And if it’s not the piss of a dog, it’ll be the piss of a fox or a rat or a badger. You cannot escape the piss, and some of those appetising-looking leaves will also have shit on them.

You might kill yourself and your family

No matter how confident you are that the mushrooms you picked are the harmless chestnut types rather than the fatal ‘destroying angels’ species, is it worth the risk? Because you can go to Tesco and buy some for a quid without murdering your family or turning into a tedious wanker who thinks foraging is somehow a cool thing to do.

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