What’s in Your Backyard?

By Bear Lake Staff / August 30, 2013

Our recent post, “Tastes Like Pink Lemonade”, was such a hit that we have brought Adam Forand back to help us identify more beautiful plants in our home!  Read on as Adam gives us some new knowledge about the plants right in our back yard!

Eastern White Pine, Pinus strobus, is a pine tree found in the Appalachian Mountains and in the Northeast.  Eastern white pine characteristically is very tall with a straight trunk.  It can be distinguished from other pines by its branches that seem to grow in rings as you go up the trunk and the needles are found in fascicles (groups) of five.  The eastern white pine was very important in colonial times; the trunks of the trees were used as the masts on old ships because they were straight, strong, and light.  Today many match sticks are made of white pine.

ship-mast White Pine Ship Mast


Rabbit’s tobacco, Pseudognaphalium obtusifolium, is a small herb found in the Eastern United States and north, all the way into Canada!  Rabbit’s Tobacco is a short herb that can be identified by its small green leaves with a silvery/white underside.  The small white flowers are borne in the late summer/fall.  It is also known as ‘life everlasting’ by the Native Americans as they used it medicinally to treat the cold and flu.  They would smoke the leaves which had an astringent affect which reduced inflammation.  Making a hot tea with the leaves and breathing in the vapor gives the same medicinal effect.  It has also been used as a repellent for insects such as spiders, moths, and scorpions by laying strips of the dried leaves across thresholds.  Rabbit’s Tobacco can be found on the edge of the woods along roadsides.

Rabbit TobaccoRabbit Tobacco 2

Thanks, Adam for all of the great information!  If you have any questions for Adam, you can contact him at Concierge@bearlakereserve.com or post a comment below!

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