Chokecherry – Prunus Virginiana: Sour Cherry of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, a’sisuwe’minaga’wunj, chokecherries are one of our most commonly found edible and medicinal berry shrubs. The “choke” is a reference to how sour they are. Pucker up! Common around Haliburton and in Algonquin park too, chokecherry dots the roadsides, stream edges and fencerows. They may be the most widespread tree in North America. Up …

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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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Balsam Fir – Abies Balsamea: Most Resin-ating of Local Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, a’ninandak’, balsam fir is an edible and mostly medicinal tree that’s the closest local plant to frankincense that I know of, scent-wise. (But it’s not a sedative.) Its resin can also be used to make Balm of Gilead, mentioned in poplar posts. A little ecological history: When the fight against eastern spruce budworm vs …

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Common Blackberry – Rubus Allegheniensis: Cordial Bramble of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, oda’tagago’minaga’wunj, common blackberry is a cordial wild edible and medicinal bramble. It’s distinguishable from black raspberries by having a core instead of being hollow inside when harvested (second picture down this page). There are around 50 species of black and raspberries in North America and up here in the north, aren’t we lucky it’s …

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Wild Red Raspberry – Rubus Idaeus Var. Strigosus: Berry Sweet Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plant

In Chippewa, mis’kominaga’wunj, wild red raspberry is one of hundreds of wild edible and medicinal brambles. Its fruit is not a true berry, but a cluster of drupelets. So, yeah, bananas are berries and raspberries are not. Around Haliburton you’ll also find purple-flowering raspberry (rubus odoratus), which will be covered in its own feature someday, and …

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Sugar Maple – Acer Saccharum: The Ultimate Canadian Edible & Medicinal Wild Plant

In Chippewa, a’nina’tig, a sugar maple by any other name would taste as sweet. I’m not sure you’re going to come across another edible and medicinal plant quite as “Canadian” as this! My sugar maples are young and mostly line the road-side of my property. Thankfully there is one on my property that’s large enough …

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