Sheep Sorrel – Rumex Acetosella: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Sour Spinach of Wild Plants

Sheep Sorrel – Rumex Acetosella

Sheep sorrel (rumex acetosella) is another tangy nonnative edible and medicinal plant in Ontario. It’s very similar in usage to our native wood sorrel. But it’s an ingredient in the popular and controversial Essiac tea. Sheep sorrel (rumex acetosella) is common here around Haliburton, primarily in ditches and sand flats. This sorrels clusters of reddish …

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Horseweed – Conyza Canadensis: Edible & Medicinal Uses of Another Overlooked Pollinator Fav of Wild Plants

Horseweed - Conyza Canadensis

Maybe it’s the name “weed”. Or maybe it’s the location; weedy parking lots and driveways. But I always assumed horseweed was a nonnative plant. Surprise! It’s actually native to Ontario and a powerhouse for small pollinators. Horseweed (conyza canadensis syn. erigeron canadensis) is fairly common around Haliburton county in sand flats, disturbed ground, and roadsides. …

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Common Lilac – Syringa Vulgaris: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Candy of Wild Plants

Common Lilac – Syringa Vulgaris

Lilac is not native to Ontario, but it’s pretty easy to find having been a favourite hedge of many homesteaders. It’s more of a candy to our native insects than nutritive (as a native plant would be). With that and the folk name “nose-candy”, candied petals, etc., “candy” seemed an apt title. My extensive library …

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Water Horehounds – Lycopus SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Culvert Mint of Wild Plants

Water Horehounds - Lycopus SPP.

In Chippewa, ande’gopin meaning “crow plant” refers to rough bugleweed, a lycopus you can find in parts of Ontario. Also known as water horehounds, these edible and medicinal plants are one of the least minty of the mint family. Water horehounds (lycopus spp.) can be found, as the name suggests, in wetlands, damp meadows and stream …

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Bedstraws (Cleavers) – Galium SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Coffee Cousin of Wild Plants

Bedstraws - Galium SPP.

Cleavers (galium aparine) is a widely popular edible and medicinal plant, but there are over a dozen bedstraws in our neck of Ontario to confuse them with. Bedstraws (galium spp.) include the most notable cleavers (g. aparine), which will be the star of this feature. When I mention “cleavers” in this article it’ll always be …

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Alfalfa – Medicago Sativa: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Vitamin and Mineral Supplement of Wild Plants

Alfalfa - Medicago Sativa

Alfalfa is a superfood of edible and medicinal plants, for some people to consume in moderation anyway. There are conditions and drug interactions that clash with this purple. Alfalfa (medicago sativa) is an uncommon sight here in open grassy areas, typically where livestock was foraging on old farmland, and sandy roadsides. It was brought over …

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