Spring-Beauty – Claytonia Caroliniana: Fairy Spuds of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Anishinaabemowin, miiaatikwek piniik, spring-beauty is one of our first spring flowers. It’s a small, striped edible and medicinal ephemeral and one of our first available bee foods. It even has its own specialist bee, the spring beauty miner. You might see non-natives like crocus and coltsfoot bloom first in the spring, before our bees even …

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Wild Lily-Of-The-Valley – Maianthemum Canadense: Mayflower of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Ojibwe, agoñgosî’ mînûn meaning chipmunk berries, wild lily-of-the-valley is not a lily. Wild lily-of-the-valley is of the Asparagaceae family (as of 2016). It’s an edible and medicinal plant, but be sure not to confuse it with true lily-of-the-valley! Another lookalike to be ware of is 3-leaved Solomon’s seal. Chipmunks are cute, but the alternative name …

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False Solomon’s-Seal – Smilacina Racemosa: Beetle-Friend of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, agong’osiminun, false Solomon’s-seal is known by multiple Latin names: smilacina racemosa, maianthemum racemosum, and vagnera racemosa. If you’ve seen a plant with a massive cluster of speckled pink and red berries hanging from it along the border of your woods, this edible and medicinal plant is likely the one. Around Haliburton we have …

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Red Osier Dogwood – Cornus Stolonifera: Substitute Willow of Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

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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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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Lowbush Blueberry – Vaccinium Angustifolium: Super Berry of Foraged Edible & Medicinal Wild Plants

In Chippewa, minaga’wunj, blueberry. Lowbush (also called “low sweet”) blueberry is common here, as is velvet-leaf blueberry (vaccinium myrtilloides) which thrives around marshes. I’ve heard a few personal anecdotes from locals about picking blueberries all the while watching a black bear or bears doing the same nearby. The shorter species of “vaccinium” are cranberries and …

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