California wild rose (Rosa californica) produces fruits (rose hips) in abundance. These were eaten fresh and raw by California Indians. They gathered the fruits from late summer through fall, but considered them best and sweetest after the first cold nights of fall. All rose species (Rosa spp.) have edible fruits. They taste sweet and tart. They are exceptionally high in vitamin C content. They are often dried and made into a tea. Rose petals are also edible and have a light fragrant taste.
California blackberry (Rubus ursinus) is well-known as a delicious and abundant fruit. The Indians ate it straight off the vine and sometimes dried it for the winter.
But did you know an infusion of its roots are effective at stopping diarrhea? The Little Lake Indians of Mendocino County were known to use its roots in this manner. Diarrhea can quickly kill one via dehydration, so in any survival situation, this would be a great herbal medicine to remember!
Beach strawberry (Fragaria chiloensis) is common on dunes along California’s coast from Santa Barbara to Oregon. Its fruits look like miniature commercial strawberries and are delicious!