|Latin Name :||Picea mariana|
|English Name :||Black spruce|
|French Name :||Épinette noire|
History and Origin
Black spruce can reach 8 to 20 meters in height and presents a conical shape, usually straight and sharp. It likes granitic, sandy or peaty and humid soils. It is found in numerous regions of Quebec. Black spruce forms dense clusters, stopping sunlight from reaching the ground, therefore creating thick moss layers over a humid, dark and deep soil. This tree is largely used to produce paper pulp because its fibre is relatively soft and because it is subject to twisting. Besides, black spruce is traditionally used to prepare spruce beer beverage, dating from the French colonies.
Native people have been using black spruce as a medicinal aid for numerous pathologies. As an example, Cree people use it as an antidiarrheal (preparing a decoction from the cones). They also prepare a balm with the resin to treat severe burns and chew the cones to relieve toothache. As to the Montagnais, they use it to prepare an infusion against sore throat.