Cardinal Flower – Lobelia Cardinalis: Not-so Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Reddest Flower of Wild Plants

Cardinal flower – Lobelia cardinalis

Cardinal-flower (lobelia cardinalis) is a similar but less potent medicinal as its close relation lobelia inlata, and it’s similarly inedible. But it’s got one of the most stunning, if not the most stunning, red flowers of all of Ontario’s native plants. In Haliburton county, cardinal flower (lobelia cardinalis) is an uncommon but memorable sight on …

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Wild Thyme – Thymus SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Five-star Kitchen Herb

Wild thyme – Thymus SPP.

It may surprise folks that basic kitchen herbs and spices have any medicinal value. Thyme (thymus spp.) is actually a powerful medicinal herb for respiratory issues and more. Wild thymes (thymus spp.) have one species noted in Haliburton Flora: mother of thyme (t. praecox). The few specimens were found on an open hillside and in …

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Indian Tobacco – Lobelia Inflata: Medicinal Uses of the Smoking Cessation Herb of Wild Plants

Indian Tobacco - Lobelia Inflata

Indian tobacco (lobelia inflata) has yet to be renamed, but I imagine it will be decolonized in the future. Another less common name for it is “wild tobacco”. I was going to cover cardinal flower this month, a showier, bright-red close relation. But usage-wise our title plant is stronger. It’s considered toxic yet has medicinal …

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Swamp Milkweed – Asclepias Incarnata: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Hot Pink Milkweed of Wild Plants

Swamp Milkweed - Asclepias Incarnata

In Chippewa, bu’giso’win meaning “swimming“, swamp milkweed is not as edible and medicinal as its common relation. So we’re all the more talking about how much of an all-star this plant is for pollinator gardens and native landscaping. Swamp milkweed (asclepias incarnata) can be found in the margins of swamps, marshes and other low wet …

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Mulberries – Morus SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the 1 Endangered vs. 1 Invasive Tree of Wild Plants

Mulberries - Morus SPP.

In Ojibwe, mitigwaabimin+ag, Ontario’s local red mulberry is precariously close to extinction. The Asian white has taken over and hybridized with the red. Only around 200 true red mulberries are left. Mulberries (morus SPP.) are absent from Haliburton Flora; just its relations hops and marijuana made the cut. I have seen them around, likely all planted …

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Queen Anne’s-lace – Daucus Carota: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Carrot of Wild Plants

Queen Anne's-lace - Daucus Carota

In Ojibwe, okaadaak means carrot, and Queen Anne’s-lace is literally a wild carrot. It’s another likely garden escapee, naturalized to Haliburton, and a surprisingly edible and medicinal wild plant. (If you’re not possibly pregnant, anyway!) Edible Uses of Queen Anne’s-lace (Wild Carrot) The whole plant smells distinctly of carrot. But the edible roots are white …

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