White Pine – Pinus Strobus: Ontario’s Tallest Edible & Medicinal Wild Plant

In Chippewa, jingwak’, white pine was the most towering of edible and medicinal plants here 200 yrs ago. Imagine forests of 200-ft tall, 4-ft wide powerful evergreen medicine. Like the now “trending” and controversial sage smudge, pine needles are said to clear negative energy when burned. This tree has so much positive energy. It has […]

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White Spruce – Picea Glauca: A Top Tip Edible & Medicinal Wild Plant

In Chippewa, cingob’, white spruce is one of the first edible and medicinal plants I enjoy come spring. Its fresh green tips are a popular forage – a top tip! These next two edible and medicinal wild plants are very similar: white spruce and white pine. They’re named for the white crust that often coats […]

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Red Oak – Quercus Rubra: The Bitter Oak of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, wi’sugi’mitigo’mic meaning “bitter oak”, red oak is an edible and medicinal tree we’re lucky to have even if just admiring it’s deep red foliage in the autumn. Carrying a piece of oak is said to bring good luck. And it’s a lucky tree to have around for many wild ones. It’s a long […]

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Common Cat-Tail – Thypha Latifolia: The Multi-Tool of Edible and Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, apuk’we, perhaps meaning “shelter” (muskrat is supporting me on this idea), common cat-tail is the multi-tool of the woods. Its uses reach far beyond the edible and medicinal. Sometimes cat-tails are mistakenly called bulrush, but that’s a separate species entirely here, yet they seem to use these terms interchangeably in Great Britain. There […]

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Wild Sarsaparilla – Aralia Nudicaulis: The Rootbeer of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, wabos’odji’bik meaning “rabbit root”, wild sarsaparilla is a prized edible and medicinal herb. And not just for the rootbeer. (Though that’d be enough for me!) Wild sarsaparilla’s folk names include rabbit foot and wild licorice. In some of my herbal books, it’s called spikenard instead. But there are many plants called spikenard. There’s […]

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Staghorn Sumac – Rhus Typhina: The Lemonade of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Ojibwe, baakwaanaatig, mainly referring to the berry, staghorn sumac is the “lemonadiest” and most vinegary of edible and medicinal shrubs. Staghorn sumac has been called the vinegar tree and the lemonade tree as its juice can be used as a substitute for vinegar or lemon juice. The “staghorn” part comes from the velvety branches […]

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