FALL RIVER - There's no need to go hungry in the forests of Southeastern Massachusetts. There are more than 150 species of wild edible plants, and naturalist Ed Richards will point out many of them on a two-hour hike Saturday in Copicut Woods, the southern gateway to the 13,600-acre Southeastern Massachusetts Bioreserve.
Wild blueberries, raspberries, grapes, and cherries are some of the fruits walkers may encounter, said Linton Harrington, education coordinator for the Trustees of Reservations, which manages the bioreserve in partnership with the City of Fall River and the state. Hikers will also see a variety of nuts, from hickory nuts to acorns, which can be ground into flour and used in baking. Richards will point out edible mushrooms, sassafras, and black and yellow birch, which produce the wintergreen oil used to flavor chewing gum and candy.
Participants should dress for the weather and wear sturdy walking shoes. They may also want to bring a basket for collecting plants and a notebook, since Richards will offer tips on how to use the specimens.
One of the most surprising discoveries walkers may make, said Harrington, is that 50 percent of the city is forest. The bioreserve, which includes land in Fall River, Dartmouth, and Freetown, features 5 miles of walking trails.
Wild Edible Plants, Sept. 22, 1-3 p.m., Copicut Woods, Indian Town Road. Rain or shine. Free (but register in advance). 508-679-2115. ttor.org, then click "Events." Directions: From Boston take Interstate 93 south, to Route 24 south. Take exit 7 onto Route 79. Take I-195 east to exit 9 (Sanford Road) and turn left to pass under the highway. The road bears right and becomes Old Bedford Road. Turn left onto Blossom Road and follow 1.3 miles. Bear right onto Indian Town Road and follow 1.7 miles to parking area on left.