Sunflower – Helianthus Annuus: Sunshine of Edible and Medicinal Wild Plants

I haven’t found a word for sunflower in Anishinaabemowin, but *giizis means sun and waabigwan means flower. While most folks know sunflower is edible, did you know it’s a medicinal plant as well? *The Ojibwe words link to The Ojibwe People’s Dictionary which is the first place I look if Frances Densmore’s book doesn’t include […]

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Common St. John’s-Wort – Hypericum Perforatum: Happy Little Flowers of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

Called nsidaiindamowin mshkiki by Joe from Creators Garden, “depression medicine”, St. John’s-wort is worthy of the happy little Bob Ross reference. It’s an edible and renown medicinal plant. Locals especially, check Joe out! He’s in Peterborough area. While picking common for the title plant, I could just as well go all out hypericum var. There […]

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Basswood – Tilia Americana: Bee Tree of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, wigub’imij, basswood is also called bee-tree, lime-tree, and linden*. It’s an amazing woodcarving material, and those familiar with just that aspect might be surprised at basswood’s edible and medicinal qualities! Plus, bees! *It’s not the same tree as European Linden but the uses are mirrored. Bee lovers, hear, hear – Basswood blooms are […]

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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 Plantain – Plantago Major: Mother of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, o’mukiki’bug, common plantain is often an initial edible and medicinal herb for beginner foragers and herbalists. It may seem mundane, but it’s powerful, and has been called the “Mother of Herbs”. It has been called “soldier’s herb” hinting at its medicinal properties. I’m particularly found of the nickname “waybread”, which calls to mind Middle […]

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Violet – Viola SPP.: The Pretty Little Things of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, wewaîe’bûgûg is the word for American dog violet in particular. Violets are aplenty around here and all are edible and medicinal. Happily, the plant is unharmed by picking the flowers. However, some violets are rare so do take the usual proper precautions in ID-ing and monitoring your wild plant allies. While you’d probably only […]

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