Tamarack – Larix Laricina: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Sweet Gum of Wild Plants

Tamarack - Larix Laricina

In Chippewa, mu’ckigwa’tig, meaning “swamp tree”, tamarack is common in low, damp areas, treed bogs (especially fens) and shore banks. If you’ve read about other trees here on the Song of the Woods blog and you’re expecting a lot, you won’t be disappointed. When I moved up north I was surprised to see an “evergreen” (it’s …

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Red Osier Dogwood – Cornus Stolonifera: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Salicylate-free Willow of Wild Plants

Red osier dogwood - Cornus stolonifera

Joe from *Creator’s Garden calls it mskwabiimnagohns. Red osier dogwood is our most recognizable dogwood. It’s both a wild edible and a medicinal that you may be aching to know. *Link is to Joe’s video about red osier on Facebook, have a listen and follow 🙂 Our local dogwoods include at least five: pagoda (cornus …

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

Balsam Fir - Abies Balsamea

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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Quaking Aspen – Populus Tremuloides: Edible & Medicinal Uses of a Popple’r Wild Plant

Quaking Aspen - Populus Tremuloides

In Chippewa, asa’di means aspen. “Balm of Gilead” can be made from various poplar buds including tremuloides/quaking aspen, a common edible, medicinal and useful tree in our area. Last month we talked about balsam poplar. But quaking aspen was my first ID’d poplar. I noticed a set of trees on the one-acre wood that softly trembled …

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White Ash – Fraxinus Americana: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Crafty Tree of Wild Plants

White Ash - Fraxinus Americana

In Chippewa, a’gimak’, white ash is a useful tree to know. In fact, it’s one of the top five trees Caleb Kinew Nini Musgrave @canadianbushcraft recommends knowing in our area. The other four being birch, cedar, spruce and basswood. The “white” refers to the pale underside of leaves, twigs, and bark, although it’s really more …

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American Beech – Fagus Grandifolia: Edible & Medicinal Uses of the Old Tree of Wild Plants

American Beech - Fagus Grandifolia

In Ojibwe, gawe’mîc, beech is the oldest tree name in the world! It’s also an antique edible and old school medicinal plant. The beechnut tree scarcely grows fruit before it’s 40, 50 years old and produces more with age. Even then, good seed crops won’t happen every year. They tend to hold onto their leaves …

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