Species of the Week: The Eastern White Cedar

Photo by Nata Culhane

Our #SpeciesOfTheWeek is the Eastern White Cedar (Thuja occidentalis). This tree also has another fitting name in Latin, “Arborvitae” which means tree of life. In 1536, the crew of famous explorer Jacques Cartier was cured from scurvy by drinking tea from the leaves and bark of the Eastern White Cedar. Soon after, the name Arborvitae was widely used. Arborvitae is also an appropriate name when it comes to the tree’s role in the forest. Cedars are essential for deer year-round. Deer love to eat the foliage and in the winter they provide warmth and shelter from the cold elements, while in summer they provide a cooler environment. The seed cones of the Eastern White Cedar are an important winter food source for birds and small mammals! These trees like to “get their feet wet” so you will most often find them in wet or swampy areas. Can you think of anything made out of Cedarwood?

This entry was posted in Friends of Murphys Point, Murphys Point, Murphys Point Provincial Park, Species of the Week. Bookmark the permalink.

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