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ForestHarvest: non-timber forest products in Scotland

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What Scotland's forests can provide

Wild resources

Many Scots go blackberry picking in the autumn or gathering holly and ivy at Christmas to decorate the home. For most people that's as far as their gathering activities go, but Scotland's woods and forests offer a great many other useful non-timber forest products for the enterprising visitor:

Woodland harvest

There are hazelnuts to gather in the autumn, fruits such as wild raspberries and elderberries for making puddings and wines, dozens of species of wild mushrooms, and delicious herbs such as wild garlic and wood sorrel to make summer salads more interesting.

The woods also provide valuable sources of wild and managed game (e.g. deer and pheasants), herbal medicines, foliage for floral decorations, craft products such as basketry materials and dyes, and seeds for planting more woodlands.

To gather or to buy?

Many of these products are widely available for gathering. But if you don't have the opportunity to go wandering around in the woods yourelf, some can also be found in the shops or via the Internet. Visit the business directory to find out what people are trading in - you will find opportunities for both buying and selling wild harvested goods.

Birch bark baskets
What's available?

This site contains information on many of our most useful forest plants, animals and fungi. It includes images, descriptions and details of where and when to find them (and what to do with them).

  • If you know what species you're looking for, visit the species directory.
  • If you know the product you're after and want to find out what's available, visit the product directory.
  • If you want to find out what's potentially available in a certain type of woodland, visit the woodland page.

Visit the recipes page for some interesting NTFP cooking ideas.