Bunchberry

Savayda finds bunchberry on the forest floor.

Bunchberry is a wild snack that is abundant in Nova Scotia. Learn its health benefits in this video.https://youtu.be/E4HG7nd8GE0

Hello, here we are on the forest floor again.

If your mother was anything like mine, she warned you not to eat the red fruit in the forest – that it might be poisonous. In fact there are many fruits in the forest, like this one here, that are safe to eat and quite delicious.

This one is bunchberry and it’s very popular throughout Nova Scotia and in shady, moist forests throughout Canada. It grows in bunches, so you’ll find bunches of them growing in colonies, and also there are bunches of these yummy berries growing on the stem together.

This red skin indicates that it’s high in antioxidants, in anthocyanadins in particular that help protect cells in our bodies from damage.

They’re also high in pectin, so the fibre in here is very good for digestive function. It lubricates and soothes the bowel and brings bulk to the stool, so it helps to promote regularity to digestive function.

Most importantly, this is just a yummy fruit. While you’re hiking you can just eat bunches of it and you can take some home with you to add to salads and to make a herbal vinegar. You simply steep these berries in apple cider vinegar for a couple of weeks, strain it off, and then you have this beautiful pink, delicious vinegar that’s high in minerals from the forest floor that you can add to your salads.

So, if you’d like to learn more about this plant, just get out there in the woods and just find it and eat it, and join us at the Bloom Institute for workshops and herb walks.

If you’re going out to forage for bunchberry, check out our foraging tips.

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