Willow – Salix SPP.: Original Aspirin of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, ozi’sigo’bimle, willow is an edible, medicinal and heavily utilized plant. Its powerful component salicin was synthesized to make the well known OTC medicine Aspirin. “Sal lis” means “near water”. And our many Haliburton waters are surrounded by salix! The marshes I visit for birding and herping are filled with a wide variety of […]

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Wild Parsnip – Pastinaca Sativa: Sweetest of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

Does anyone have an Anishinaabemowin word for parsnip? There isn’t a traditional word because this plant is an invasive settler plant. Edible and medicinal carrot/parsley family plants are notorious on the internet. Their relation giant hogweed is especially villainized. My library of herbal books tends to focus on cow parsnip, and even then, these parsnip […]

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Common St. John’s-Wort – Hypericum Perforatum: Happy Little Flowers of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

Called nsidaiindamowin mshkiki by Joe from Creators Garden, “depression medicine”, St. John’s-wort is worthy of the happy little Bob Ross reference. It’s an edible and renown medicinal plant. Locals especially, check Joe out! He’s in Peterborough area. While picking common for the title plant, I could just as well go all out hypericum var. There […]

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Basswood – Tilia Americana: Bee Tree of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, wigub’imij, basswood is also called bee-tree, lime-tree, and linden*. It’s an amazing woodcarving material, and those familiar with just that aspect might be surprised at basswood’s edible and medicinal qualities! Plus, bees! *It’s not the same tree as European Linden but the uses are mirrored. Bee lovers, hear, hear – Basswood blooms are […]

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Lowbush Blueberry – Vaccinium Angustifolium: Super Berry of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, minaga’wunj, blueberry. Lowbush (also called “low sweet”) blueberry is common here, as is velvet-leaf blueberry (vaccinium myrtilloides) which thrives around marshes. I’ve heard a few personal anecdotes from locals about picking blueberries all the while watching a black bear or bears doing the same nearby. The shorter species of “vaccinium” are cranberries and […]

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Quaking Aspen – Populus Tremuloides: A Popple’r Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plant

In Chippewa, asa’di means aspen. “Balm of Gilead” can be made from various poplar buds including tremuloides/quaking aspen, a common edible, medicinal and useful tree in our area. Last month we talked about balsam poplar. But quaking aspen was my first ID’d poplar. I noticed a set of trees on the one-acre wood that softly trembled […]

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