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Wintergreen

( Gaultheria procumbens )

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Wintergreen
Checkerberry
Eastern Teaberry
Winterberry
Ericaceae
Gaultheria
Gaultheria procumbens
Linnaeus
MB, NB, NL, NS, ON, PE, QC
Characteristics

Shrub

Evergreen

Partial Shade

Sand

Acidophile

Dry, Normal, Moist

No

No

No

No
Habitat Considerations

Boreal Shield, Atlantic Maritime, Mixedwood Plains, Hudson Plains

Woodland, Forest Edge

Woodland
Design Considerations

3 cm

5 cm

Apr - May

White/Cream

Yes

Yes

Red


Yes

Yes

No

No

No

No

Squirrels, Birds

No
Conservation Status

No


Interesting Tidbits

Fruit is eaten by a variety of mammals and birds including: chipmunks, deer, grouse, and partridge. Leaves browsed by deer and moose. Used by Aboriginals to brew a tea. Mohawks, as well as Ojibwes, and others, knew the tea as medicinal as well as a healthful beverage. Such names as ""teaberry"" emphasize importance as a year-round beverage, and as a food flavoring for meat and fish cooked with fermented leaves. Wintergreen oil, is derived via steam distillation. It contains methyl salicylate, which is antiseptic, analgesic, carminative, and antirheumatic. It contains methyl salycliates, the active pain killers in asprin, useful for colds, headaches, and to bring down fevers. OVERDOSES OF WINTERGREEN OIL CAN BE TOXIC. Medicine: A tea from the leaves eased symptoms of rheumatism. Food: The leaves were used as a potherb or eaten as a snack. Bright red berries ripen in autumn and improve with freezing so are harvested in the winter or spring. (Rook) Sensory Aspect: Aromatic


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