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Named for its strength and density, the branches of this shrub were used to make arrows and spear shafts, and even sewing needles.

Bigleaf maple

This tree produces wood that is good for canoe paddles, and leaves that, some believed, could be rubbed on the face of a young man to prevent the growth of whiskers.


Berries of this shrub could be mixed with bear grease to eat in the winter. You could also fashion its sturdy little leaves into temporary drinking cups.

Sword Fern

Frond of this plant could be used as protective layering in baskets.

Red Alder

Providing the best fuel to smoke fish, this tree also provided a red pigment that could be used for dye.

Baldhip Rose

The skin of the fruit(the "hips") of this flowering plant provided a little nutrition in times of famine. But caution was advised because too much ingestion of the fibrous seeds could lead to "itchy bottom".

Western Redcedar

Called the "Tree of Life", this beautiful conifer was used in making major artifacts of Native American culture such as totem poles, canoes, and the planks of long houses. The bark could be fashioned into clothing.

Vine Maple

Flexible branches of this shrub could be used to make snowshoe frames and drum hoops.

Douglas Fir

Although the wood from this common tree was used for fuel, its sap was also used as a primitive form of caulk, sealing holes in canoes. It could also be applied to sticks used as torches.


Fibers from this plant could be fashioned into strings and rope. In addition, the fluff from the seeds was used as stuffing for mattresses and pillows.

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