They grow slowly and it takes a long time for wild populations to recover if a forager takes too many. I usually come back from a good ramping trip with several pounds: enough for us to eat fresh before they go bad with a little extra to keep for eating later (I rarely go digging more than once a season unless I come home with a particularly light harvest). Ramps are only in season for a month or so, but, for us, getting them is only half the problem. These are components attached to heavy boards allowing the boards to be safely used as ramps. That's all there is to digging. Besides eating them, Native Americans, in particular the Cherokee, used wild ramps in treatments for coughs and colds and in a poultice applied to bee stings. We have wild onions in California, but they don’t come close to the taste, texture, and versatility of ramps (don't get me wrong, we have wild mushrooms that East Coasters would kill for). EatingWell may receive compensation for some links to products and services on this website. Amazon and the Amazon logo are trademarks of Amazon.com, Inc. or its affiliates. Ramps aren’t difficult to care for once you’ve got them growing, so there’s no reason to harm native populations to get your ramp fix. What Are Ramps and What Can I Do with Them? If you can't give yourself the time to do it, please consider taking only greens and leaving the bulbs undisturbed. Ramps can be found growing in patches in rich, moist, deciduous forests in eastern North America. How to Grow Ramps (Wild Leeks) To grow ramps, you need to know a few things about their life cycle. I find that, when I overzealously harvest, it makes more work for me in the long run, because some ramps will inevitably go bad before I can get to them. They're only available for a fleeting period during early spring—here's how to make the most of them. These refrigerator pickles are one of the best ways to use spring ramps and the leftover spices in your pantry. They should be stored uncleaned. Please be judicious and don't take any more than you will use. 1/3 cup olive oil. But for many natives, the harvest of ramps in West Virginia and the subsequent onslaught of ramp celebrations, festivals, and dinners is the only sure sign that spring has sprung. We've found the best way to preserve them is by making ramp compound butter (see recipe below). I like a little chopped up in a salad, but ramps as a cooked vegetable are a lot more fun. Here's one of the recipes... quick and easy and sounds tasty: "Fry some bacon until crisp, remove the bacon then drain off part of the bacon drippings. They have a sweet, earthy taste that's similar to both scallions and garlic. Historically ramps were regarded as a spring tonic in the Appalachians. (Check out: The Best Way to Store Fruits and Veggies here.). They're best used fresh, but both can be put away for eating later in the year. A foraged crop, like wild mushrooms such as morels, their short harvest window runs from about mid-April through May. We've successfully transplanted ramps that come back each year but our little patch hasn't spread (it's below 3000 ft.). Our wild ramps were hand-picked in a sugar maple forest in NY's Adirondack mountains in May 2020. If the word "ramp" only brings to mind a highway exit, it's time to learn about "wild ramps" (which by the way, have nothing to do with driving). A close second is ramp pesto. Then spread the bulbs out on a sheet pan or waxed paper so they are not touching and freeze. Ramps, Allium tricoccum, also known as wild leek, wild garlic, and ramson (though ramson is actually a European cousin, and probably the source for the name “ramps”).Ramps grow mostly in the mountains of the eastern … The leaves emerge in early spring, but the plants are ephemeral , disappearing within a month or two and remaining dormant until the following spring. Jeanine recommends the book Having Your Ramps and Eating Them Too by the "Johnny Appleseed of Ramps" for more info on cultivating ramps. See more ideas about Ramp recipe, Wild ramps, Recipes. DON'T DO IT! Photo by Holly A. Heyser. (They're also known as wild leeks or wild onions.) Then re-cover the roots with dirt and leave them to grow next year. Ramps are perennials and grow in groups with their scallion-like bulbs firmly rooted beneath the soil. They begin to emerge when the soil temperatures increase after snow melt, which usually occurs in late March and early April, depending on geographic location. 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