Viper’s Bugloss – Echium Vulgare: Comfrey-like of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

Does anyone have a word for viper’s bugloss in Anishinaabemowin? This edible and medicinal plant is a lot like comfrey and borage in usage. It even has the same toxic PAs (pyrrolizidine alkaloids) as comfrey. That’s something to consider besides the spiny bristles covering this plant. If you’re prone to roadside walks, I’m sure you’ve …

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The Wood Folk Diaries: Volume 2, Chapter 10: Meet the Ruby-Throated Hummingbirds

Dear Wood Folk, There are many species of hummingbirds in the world, but here in Haliburton county there’s just one: the ruby-throated hummingbird. Only the males have the “ruby throat”, which in low light appears black or rusty. All sorts of folks put out hummingbird feeders here come end of May and bring them back …

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White Clover – Trifolium Repens: Groundcover of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Ojibwe, nisoobag+oon. Not to be confused with white sweet clover, white clover is the blanco version of red clover. Used less medicinally and culinarily as its red cousin, it’s like a runner-up clover, but still useful. Most people looking into white clover are thinking groundcover options. If you hunt you’ll likely find the uncommon hybird …

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Alder – Alnus SPP.: Oak-like of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, wadub, alder is a highly astringent edible and medicinal wild plant. Its usage is similar to oak. Alder means red in German, so named because the bark makes your saliva red. But don’t go nibbling on the bark now – it’s emetic (it will make you throw up!) Speckled alder (alnus rugosa) as listed …

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Chokecherry – Prunus Virginiana: Sour Cherry of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, a’sisuwe’minaga’wunj, chokecherries are one of our most commonly found edible and medicinal berry shrubs. The “choke” is a reference to how sour they are. Pucker up! Common around Haliburton and in Algonquin park too, chokecherry dots the roadsides, stream edges and fencerows. They may be the most widespread tree in North America. Up …

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Canada Plum – Prunus Nigra: Scorned of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Ojibwe, bagesaanaatig means plum tree. This edible and medicinal plum tree used to be widespread throughout Ontario. The stones were dropped along trails and around villages, wrapping the world in a plum thicket. But now Canada plum is uncommon here, which is surprising as wildlife loves to gobble up the fruit, so you’d think it …

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