Canada Thistle – Cirsium Arvense: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the “She Doesn’t Even Go Here” of Wild Plants

Canada Thistle – Cirsium Arvense: "She Doesn't Even Go Here" of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, ma’zana’tig refers to thistles. Despite the popular name Canada thistle, this edible and medicinal plant is not native to Canada. Yup, Canada thistle isn’t from Canada. But it’s common along roadsides and I’ve found it taking over old fields as well. Canada thistles delicate purple-ish flowerheads make it less likely to confuse with burdock …

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Viper’s Bugloss – Echium Vulgare: Edible & Medicinal Uses of Comfrey-like of Wild Plants

Viper’s Bugloss – Echium Vulgare: Comfrey-like of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

Viper’s bugloss (echium vulgare) is an edible and medicinal plant that’s a lot like comfrey and borage in usage. It even has the same toxic PAs (pyrrolizidine alkaloids) as comfrey. That’s something to consider besides the spiny bristles covering this plant. If you’re prone to roadside walks, I’m sure you’ve noticed this electric blue flowered …

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White Clover – Trifolium Repens: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Covercrop of Wild Plants

White Clover – Trifolium Repens: Groundcover of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Ojibwe, nisoobag+oon. Not to be confused with white sweet clover, white clover is the blanco version of red clover. Used less medicinally and culinarily as its red cousin, it’s like a runner-up clover, but still useful. Most people looking into white clover are thinking cropcover or groundcover options. If you hunt you’ll likely find the …

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Asparagus – Asparagus Officinalis: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Gibbons-Famed of Wild Plants

Asparagus – Asparagus officinalis

One of the most famous edible shoots in the world, asparagus sometimes escapes from gardens becoming a “wild” edible and medicinal plant. Finding asparagus in the wild is uncommon here, but with its legendary title mention in Euell Gibbon’s Stalking the Wild Asparagus and its ability to grow here around Haliburton, it’s making the cut. …

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Soapwort – Saponaria Officinalis: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Suds of Wild Plants

Soapwort - Saponaria officinalis

Soapwort, called “bouncing bet” in Haliburton Flora, is a medicinal and nominally edible plant that has been heavily used as you might imagine – to wash things. And sometimes still is. I’ve noticed soapwort growing in damp places, along streams, and going off meager experience I’d say where settlers and water would congregate 100+ years …

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Orange Day-Lily – Hemerocallis Fulva: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Ditch Spud of Wild Plants

Orange day-lily – Hemerocallis fulva

Like many plants called “lily”, orange day-lily isn’t a true lily. The flowers are just lily-like. The “day” part comes from each bloom only lasting a day. It’s a non-native edible and medicinal plant you can just gobble up if you like. In Haliburton, we have both orange (hemerocallis fulva) and yellow (hemerocallis lilioasphodelus) day-lilies, …

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