Garlic Mustard – Alliaria Petiolata: Edible & Medicinal Uses of A Notoriously Aggressive Invasive Nonnative

If you spend any time in public parks and woodlands you may be familiar with the notorious garlic mustard (Alliaria petiolata). While there are numerous nonnative plants in Ontario that are spreading into wild spaces, plants like garlic mustard, creeping jenny, dog strangling vine, “bamboo” that’s actually Japanese knotweed, and Lily-of-the-valley are some of the …

Read more

Winter Cress – Barbarea Vulgaris: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Arugula of Wild Plants

Winter Cress – Barbarea Vulgaris

Wintercress is a nonnative garden vegetable that has escaped into the wild in Ontario. The subtitle was a toss up between broccoli and arugula of edible wild plants. Which would you have picked? Winter cress (barbarea vulgaris) is common here along moist roadsides and in fields among flowers and grasses. Its bright yellow flower clusters …

Read more

Horseradish – Armoracia Rusticana: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Sting Nose of Wild Plants

Horseradish - Armoracia Rusticana

Horseradish is a nonnative edible and medicinal plant that has escaped into the wild here in Ontario. It’s known for causing your nose to sting when you eat it. Horseradish (armoracia rusticana syn. cochlearia armoracia, armoracia lapathifolia, and rorippa armoracia), originally called sea radish, is a long way from home in Ontario. It was brought here as a …

Read more

Shepherd’s Purse – Capsella Bursa-pastoris: Edible & Medicinal Uses of Another Mustard of Wild Plants

Shepherd’s Purse – Capsella Bursa-pastoris

Shepherd’s purse is the second-most prolific wild “weed” in the entire world (polygonum aviculare/pigweed is #1). In cottage country Ontario it’s not that prolific, but you can still find this edible and medicinal mustard. Shepherd’s purse (capsella bursa-pastoris) may be found around here on dry sandy sites and moist wooded roadsides. I’ve only found it …

Read more

Field Penny-cress – Thlaspi Arvense: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Jet Fuel of Wild Plants

Field Penny-cress – Thlaspi Arvense

Field penny-cress is a slightly edible and medicinal plant may have a future in renewable fuels. Field penny-cress (thlaspi arvense) is listed as uncommon in Haliburton Flora. It is sometimes found along roadsides or on old farmland mixed in with tall grasses. It prefers disturbed areas, so even though it’s not native here it’s not …

Read more

Field Mustard – Brassica Rapa: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Mother Cruciferous of Wild Plants

Field Mustard - Brassica Rapa: Mother Cruciferous of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

You’re unlikely to find the popular white or black mustards here in the wild. The only brassica on iNat for Haliburton, Ontario is field mustard (brassica rapa). It’s more of a wild cabbage or wild turnip. It’s the mother of many vegetables you’ll find in the grocery store, but not a “true mustard” renown for …

Read more