Bluebead Lily – Clintonia Borealis: Poisonberry of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Anishnabe, odotaagaans+ag, bluebead lily has toxic berries, but it’s still an edible and medicinal wild plant. It’s gorgeous too, with pretty yellow flowers and stunning blue berries that form a gradient and marbled cluster of blue as they ripen. Corn lily AKA bluebead lily (clintonia borealis) is common around Halliburton in deciduous or mixed woods …

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Mouse-ear Chickweeds – Cerastium SPP.: Furries of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa,  wi’nibidja’bibaga’no meaning “toothplant”, refers to the European stellaria spp. But the one we’re talking about here is the cerastium spp., known as mouse-ear chickweeds. They’re almost as edible, furriness aside, but not as medicinal as the stellaria species. It’s important to note the hairless “common chickweed” (stellaria media) is a rare nonnative in the …

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Yellow Birch – Betula Alleghaniensis: Wintergreen Tree of Edible & Medicinal Plants

In Ojibwe, wiinizik, yellow birch has a lot in common with other birches, but along with black/sweet birch (which isn’t in Haliburton) yellow birch has a subtle wintergreen scent and taste, making it one of the few wintergreen-y edible and medicinal plants around Haliburton. Yellow birch is common around Haliburton in tall mixed woods. I notice …

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Bergamot – Monarda Spp.: Bee Balm of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Anishinaabemowin, sasaapkwaanins, bergamot is also popularly known as bee balm. It’s a native edible and medicinal plant that’s frequented by pollinators (although that’s not why it’s called bee balm!) And it’s a mint, named after the similar tasting bergamot orange that flavors earl grey tea. Wild bergamot (monarda fistulosa) is rare here. It’s the …

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Canada Plum – Prunus Nigra: Scorned of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Ojibwe, bagesaanaatig means plum tree. This edible and medicinal plum tree used to be widespread throughout Ontario. The stones were dropped along trails and around villages, wrapping the world in a plum thicket. But now Canada plum is uncommon here, which is surprising as wildlife loves to gobble up the fruit, so you’d think it …

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Wild Strawberry – Fragaria Virginiana: Early Berry of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, ode’iminidji’bik meaning “heart berry root”, wild strawberry is one of the first berries to ripen, around the start of summer in cottage country, Ontario. It’s the “queen berry” of our edible and medicinal wild plants. I titled this entry with the main wild strawberry species you’ll find in abundance here, but we also have …

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