Wild Geraniums – Geranium SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of One of the Strongest Astringent Herbs

Wild geraniums are not your common garden centre “geraniums” (Pelargonium spp.). Today’s featured plant is from a different genus. Sometimes called cranesbills, this species is slightly edible, a popular medicinal astringent and also wonderful for native landscaping. Around Haliburton, Ontario, Northern Cranes-bill (Geranium bicknellii) and the more common herb Robert (G. robertianum) are found. In …

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Skullcaps – Scutellaria SPP.: Medicinal Uses of the “Perfect Nervine” of Wild Plants

Skullcaps - Scutellaria SPP.

All six species of skullcaps (Scutellaria SPP.) presently noted in Ontario on iNaturalist are native plants. The main two being the common/marsh skullcap (Scutellaria galericulata) and side-flowering/mad-dog (Scutellaria lateriflora). You can find them in wet shores, swampy areas in the woods and sometimes on sandy roadsides. These two common skullcaps around Haliburton are used similarly …

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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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Willowherbs – Epilobium SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Pie Scented Wild Plants

Willowherbs – Epilobium SPP.

Willowherbs (epilobium spp.) aren’t a stranger to our Edible and Medicinal Plants blog. We covered Fireweed previously, the star of the species as far as human usage goes. And the showiest. The others are mostly quainter looking, but I think they deserve a moment in the sun too. Hairy willow-herb (e. hirsutum) has showier blooms …

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The Wood Folk Diaries: Volume 4 (Poisonous Plants), Chapter 4: Blue Flag Iris

The Wood Folk Diaries: Volume 4 (Poisonous Plants), Chapter 4: Blue Flag Iris

Dear Wood Folk, We’ve covered a tinier iris before: blue-eyed grass. It’s a miniature lookalike you might find in your lawn around cottage country Ontario. Our title iris on the other hand can grow close to a few feet tall. Common along wetlands here, Northern blue flag (Iris versicolor) is our native blue flag iris. …

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Wild Lettuces – Lactuca SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Opium of Wild Plants

Wild Lettuces – Lactuca SPP.

In Chippewa, odjici’gomin refers to Canada wild lettuce (lactuca canadensis), one of many edible and medicinal wild lettuces (lactuca spp.) you’ll find in Ontario. They are often confused with chicory, dandelion or sow thistles, but fortunately these tall wild lettuces have no poisonous lookalikes. Although, at a glance rattlesnake roots have a similar look and height. …

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