Tamarack trees (Larix laricina) are a species of larch that are native to North America. They are commonly found in wetland areas (like our farm!) where they grow tall and straight, reaching heights of up to 80 feet. These trees have been an important resource for people for thousands of years, and their unique properties have made them a valuable source of wood, fiber, and food.
Tamarack wood is known for its strength, durability, and resistance to rot, making it ideal for building boats and homes. The wood is also used to make furniture, flooring, and cabinetry. Tamarack bark was traditionally used by Indigenous people for tanning leather. It’s roots were used for making baskets and sewing canoes, while the needles, sap and inner bark were used for medicinal purposes.
In addition to their practical uses, Tamarack trees are also a valuable resource for wildlife. Many species of birds, including woodpeckers and chickadees, nest in Tamarack trees, while porcupines, squirrels, and other animals use the bark and wood for food and shelter. Honeybees are also known to visit Tamarack trees for their pollen and sap.
Tamarack trees are the only deciduous and coniferous tree producing small, yellowish-green flowers in the spring, which are a valuable source of pollen for honeybees. Bees collect pollen from the flowers, which they use as a protein source for raising their brood. Even after the tree loses its needles in the fall, the sap from Tamarack trees is also a valuable resource for honeybees, as it is high in sugar and minerals. Bees collect the sap and use it to make honeydew honey and propolis which are both highly sought after products for medicinal purposes.
At Tamarack Jacks, we are passionate about all wild things including fauna and flora, and we love to share our knowledge with others. We believe that Tamarack trees are an important part of the ecosystem, and we encourage people to learn more about them and the role they play in history and present earth. Whether you're interested in building materials, food, or honey production, Tamarack trees are a fascinating and valuable resource that is worth exploring further.
Until next time….