Hey Jim, nice post. I never saw the home gardening thread stuck at the bottom of the forums list. Glad I found it.
I know what you mean as evergreen. My area of Maine is mostly spruce/fir/pine, with beautiful yellow birch and red maples spread out sporadically - mostly areas that had been logged and are still going through succession. Maine summers truly start around June 1. Lupines sprouting around mid June showing off their beautiful purple, pink and white spikes. Lots of Yarrow, Pearly Everlasting's, Goldenrod's, New England Asters. Finally found some Lady Slipper's in a wetlands area, never saw them before up until about 3 weeks ago. I started a plant press to document whatever I come across.
As for edible plants, its funny, I planted strawberries two years ago. Along with many other vegetables. The strawberries are doing excellent, and started producing fruit about two weeks ago. Delicious small ones that will provide for the rest of the summer right through the first frost. I was going to do a full garden, but just don't have enough time to properly tend to it this year, but the strawberries bounced back and are producing like mad.
So this year, instead, I got in to harvesting local plants that grow wild. For instance, cat tail's, the young shoots are edible, and the adult roots are like spaghetti. Wintergreen grows everywhere on the forest floor of Spruce forests, which makes great refreshing mint tea. Field Pennycress seeds can be harvested to make pepper, tons of blueberries. This county is the lead supplier of blueberries, in the world, and they grow wild everywhere, along with raspberries and blackberries. Delicious treat when on the trail! All ya gotta do is bring some pancake mix and add some water and freshly picked blueberries for a tasty morning trail breakfast. There is pineapple weed and chamomile that makes delicious tea once dried. Its neat when you get in to identifying local plants and realizing that a lot of things that grow naturally in the area are edible. I have fun