Beggarticks – Bidens SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Burr Marigolds of Wild Plants

Beggarticks – Bidens SPP.

Beggarsticks (bidens spp.) may look like flowers to choke on, but they are more edible and medicinal than they appear. We currently have around half a dozen species of beggarticks (bidens spp.) in Haliburton county, Ontario. But the only one I’ve noticed is devil’s beggarticks (bidens frondosa). It’s fairly common in waste areas, sand flats …

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Bogbean – Menyanthes Trifoliata: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Marsh Clover of Wild Plants

Bogbean - Menyanthes Trifoliata

Bogbean AKA Buckbean (menyanthes trifoliata) is native to Ontario and found in wet, boggy habitats. It’s used for brewing and medicinally. Bogbean is closely related to gentian and it shows. Called buckbean in Haliburton Flora, bogbean (menyanthes trifoliata) is uncommon here. It likes sphagnum mats in bogs and shallow, boggy edges of small lakes, and …

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Arrowheads – Sagittaria SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Marsh Potato of Wild Plants

Arrowhead - Sagittaria SPP.

In Chippewa, muj’ota’buk meaning “moose leaf”, arrowhead is an edible and medicinal plant in the humans case as well as moose. Not to be confused with arrowroot, which you can find at health food stores, you’ll find arrowhead in the marsh instead. Usually surrounded by cattail and the like, arrowhead (sagittaria SPP.) is a common aquatic plant …

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Alder – Alnus SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Oak-like of Wild Plants

Alder - Alnus SPP.

In Chippewa, wadub, alder is a highly astringent edible and medicinal wild plant. Its usage is similar to oak. Alder means red in German, so named because the bark makes your saliva red. But don’t go nibbling on the bark now – it’s emetic (it will make you throw up!) Speckled alder (alnus rugosa) as listed …

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Bulrush – Scirpus SPP.: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Sweet Root of Wild Plants

Bulrush - Scirpus SPP.

In Chippewa, ana’kun, bulrush is often neighbor to the similarly highly edible cattail. Across the pond, cattail is called bulrush. Perhaps “bulrush” being used for unrelated plants is one of the reasons scirpus SPP. is an often overlooked edible and medicinal plant here in North America. Or perhaps it’s due to cattail being so similar yet …

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

Willow - Salix SPP.

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 species! The marshes I visit for birding and herping are filled with a wide variety …

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