PK Podcast 015: John Rensten On Urban Foraging

by Paul Kirtley

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John Rensten with a sorrel leaf

John Rensten has a passion for sharing wild foods which are “hiding in plain sight”.

My guest on this podcast is forager John Rensten. John lives and works in London, UK but John’s interest in foraging was aroused by learning about edible fungi in the New Forest.

Having opened a successful London gastro pub in 2004, John combined his love of wild food with this venture, becoming increasingly interested in adding wild ingredients to his menus.

Since then, John has concentrated even more on wild foods and, in particular, urban foraging. John has focussed on showing other Londoners what can be foraged under their noses or, as John puts it “hiding in plain sight”.

John’s Forage London website has many articles and recipes as well as some videos about foraging in the city. John runs foraging walks in London as well as fungi forays in Hampshire. He has written a book, entitled The Edible City, to be published in September 2016.

I caught up with John in London to talk foraging in the city and learning more about trees and plants in urban spaces. Our conversation forms episode 15 of my podcast…

How To Listen To This Podcast

You can listen to this podcast here on my website by using the player above. Just press the play button.

You can download the podcast episode .mp3 file by right-clicking on the download link to save the .mp3 file down to your local machine/device.

You can also subscribe on iTunes and on Stitcher or via my podcast-only RSS feed.


Click here to read or download the transcript of Episode 15 of The Paul Kirtley Podcast

John Rensten in the undergrowth

John rummaging in the undergrowth of Victora Park, London, while we recorded this podcast. Photo: Paul Kirtley

leaves and flowers arranged on John Renstens jackets

Some of the plants found in a small area of undergrowth. More details of what these are in the podcast, where John and I discuss these species and more. Photo: Paul Kirtley

Links Mentioned In This Podcast
Forage London on Facebook
Forage London on Twitter

John Rensten with a large stinging nettle leaf

Remember to say hi to John on social media. Links to his Facebook and Twitter accounts are above…

Recommended Books


Thanks For Listening!

Thanks for joining me on this podcast. If you have any comments about this episode, please leave them in the comments section below.

If you enjoyed this episode, please share it using the social media buttons at the top of this page. Thanks!

And Finally…

Finally don’t forget to leave an honest review & rating on iTunes or on Stitcher.

Ratings and reviews are extremely helpful and greatly appreciated! They do matter in the rankings of this podcast and I read each and every one of them.

Related Material On Paul Kirtley’s Blog

Boost Your Botany With Urban Bushcraft

Wild Wanderings 1 – Spring Plants And Some Tracking Fun

Careful With Your Carrots: A Case In Point

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Paul Kirtley is an award-winning professional bushcraft instructor. He is passionate about nature and wilderness travel. In addition to writing this blog Paul owns and runs Frontier Bushcraft, a wilderness bushcraft school, offering bushcraft courses and wilderness expeditions.


{ 14 comments… read them below or add one }


I really enjoyed this podcast.
Thank you Paul


Paul Kirtley

You’re very welcome Isa. Thanks for the feedback πŸ™‚


Gavin Henry

Foraging is a massive part of your bushcraft tree and plant id. I know this now πŸ™‚


Paul Kirtley

Indeed πŸ™‚


Andrew Rush

Loved the podcast, just bought Neil Fletchers “The Easy Wild Food Guide” from Amazon.


Gavin Henry

Same here! Looking forward to John’s book.


Paul Kirtley



Paul Kirtley

Hey Andrew, good to hear from you πŸ™‚ Thanks for your feedback on this podcast. Glad you enjoyed it so much.




Dave Welsby

Paul, not to play down any other episode, but this one was one of the most enjoyable so far! I think the noise of the park added something to it, I can’t put my finger on it but it was awesome! I would like to get John’s book as well! Best regards Dave


Paul Kirtley

Thanks for the feedback Dave. Glad you enjoyed it so much πŸ™‚


Chris Eyles

Great podcast.

But I do have to point out that Bob Fleming was a character played by Charlie Higson, not Harry Enfield.

Bob can be seen here badger watching.


Paul Kirtley

True. πŸ™‚



Thanks Paul,
Learning all the time here. My knowledge of flora can only expand:)
Enjoying your podcasts and Youtube videos.


Paul Kirtley

Thanks Sandy πŸ™‚

All the best,



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