What pine trees are edible?

White pine (considered the best tasting); slippery elm; black birch; yellow birch; red spruce; black spruce; balsamic fir; tamarack. While all pine trees have edible seeds, most are too small to be worth it. Around the world there are approximately 20 species with large edible pine nuts, and most of them grow in areas with a warm climate. Pine can be a great escape for people lost in the woods who lack other foods.

Edible and non-harmful pine species include white pine, black and red spruce, yellow and black birch, slippery elm and balsamic fir. Pine species, such as Ponderosa, Lodgepole, Jeffery, Western and Eastern White, and Sugar Pine, have been used for medicinal purposes for a long time. Trees are more of a survival food than something to fill your plate with. Eating too many leaves and bark may cause an upset stomach.

Unless you are in a survival situation, I recommend using trees to make teas and syrups. Spring buds are also easy to digest and are very well candied. Cement pollen is also easy to digest and is full of nutrients. In addition to vitamin C, which boosts the immune system, pine needle tea also contains a high level of vitamin A that is good for hair, skin and eyesight.

The pine trees of these tree varieties are definitely not what anyone would like to take a sip of in their favorite cup. In addition to the rules aimed at preserving the health of pine trees, you must preserve their health, that is, do not eat poisonous pine species. An edible pine tree can save your life if you run out of food and only have a knife or sharp object. Thanks to this method, you will have two dishes prepared at once, boiled bark directly and tea with pine needles.

Both the inner and outer bark of pine trees have been used as a source of food by the Sami, an indigenous people from northern Scandinavia, and not just as food for famine. Internally, pine is high in vitamin C, making it perfect in a nutrient-rich pine tea or a pine-needle soda. First you'll want to remove or cut the needles from the branch and, if they're too long (as are many pine trees), cut them into smaller pieces. Of course, nothing is 100% certain and everyone reacts to plants in different ways, but there is no evidence that pine needles cause problems in pregnant people (at least that's what I can find when reviewing studies on pine needles and abortions).

We welcome a careful and conscientious attitude to nature, so eating pine should be less harmful to pine trees. Harvesting, even a little, scares the tree for life, and harvesting too much will completely kill it. Most people know pine pollen as that annoying yellow dust that covers their cars and sidewalks in spring. If I wanted to keep the pine needles from my Christmas tree for later use in a tea or cough syrup, it would be best to freeze them after harvesting the needles.

According to the Herbal Academy's online botany and wild crafts course, “As a general rule, never harvest from the trunk of a living tree. I eat 3 to 5 pounds of needles a day for many days in a row, and even then, if you start showing symptoms of problems if you remove the pine needles, that's fine. When most people think of pine trees, they think of pineapples, the evergreen needle-shaped leaves of the tree, the scent of a fireplace burning pine logs, pine furniture, and aromatherapy pine oils.