Hemlock

Ojibwe Name:

gaagaagiwanzhiki

Scientific Name:

Tsuda canadensis

Significance in Ojibwe Cultures:

The bark is used as a stain for all woodenware. In the Great Lakes region there is lots of heavy metal toxicity in the soil which accumulates in plants and animals. The mixture of tanins and resins in the stain becomes absorbent and absorb the heavy metals in food.

How to Identify the Leaves:

"Its shape is conical, with a wide trunk that tapers into a thin top. Skinny flexible branches grow straight out from the trunk and then droop at the ends. The eastern hemlock’s bark is scaly when the tree is young and cracks deeply as the tree gets older.

Its needles are 1 to 2 centimetres long and are shiny green on top and paler underneath. The cones of the eastern hemlock are oval shaped, and are 12 to 20 millimetres long. In the late fall and winter, the seeds fall out of the cones and onto the ground."

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