Search for "Plants"

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Article

Wild Berries in Canada

Over 200 species of small, fleshy, wild fruits occur in Canada. Most people consider them all “berries” but, technically, they are classed in different categories. These categories include drupes (e.g. cherries, elderberries), pomes (e.g. saskatoon berries), true berries (e.g. gooseberries, blueberries) and aggregate fruits (e.g. raspberries, strawberries). In this article “berry” is used in its less technical sense. The following are favourite Canadian wild berries.

Article

Coniferous Trees

Sometimes called evergreens, most coniferous trees keep their foliage year-round. There are over 600 living species of conifers, and while there is some debate over how many are native to Canada, the number is approximately 30.

Article

Endangered Plants in Canada

A species is endangered if there are threats to its survival. Plants are put at risk for several reasons, including: climate change and the loss of natural habitat to cities, agriculture and industry. In Canada, these activities threaten entire natural ecosystems, such as older forests and Prairie grasslands. As of 2018, a total of 771 species were considered at risk in Canada, including 240 plants. (Other species at risk include animals; see also Endangered Animals in Canada).

Article

Indigenous Peoples' Medicine in Canada

Since time immemorial Indigenous peoples in Canada have been using plants and other natural materials as medicine. Plant medicines are used more frequently than those derived from animals. In all, Indigenous peoples have identified over 400 different species of plants (as well as lichens, fungi and algae) with medicinal applications. Medicine traditions — the plants used, the ailments treated, protocols for harvesting and application, and modes of preparation — are similar for Indigenous peoples across the country. In many Indigenous communities, there are recognized specialists trained in traditional medicine, and their practice often reflects spiritual aspects of healing as well as physical outcomes. In many cases, the therapeutic properties of Indigenous medicines are attributable to particular compounds and their effects on the body, but in other instances, their application is little understood by western medical practitioners. Within Indigenous communities, specific methods of harvesting and preparation of medicines are considered intellectual property of particular individuals or families.