|Latin Name:||Populus balsamifera (Populus candicans, Populus michauxii, Populus tacamahaca)|
|English Name:||Balsam Poplar (Balm Of Gilead, Balm Poplar, Black Poplar, Tacamahac)|
|French Name:||Peuplier baumier, Peuplier balsamifère, Tacamahac|
History and Origin
Balsam poplar is a tall tree reaching 35 meters in height. The essential oil is extracted from the strongly aromatic buds, hairless and resinous. Balsam poplar grows everywhere on the territory, but its presence as a hardwood tree is most remarkable in Northern regions. It is found from Alaska to Newfoundland and Labrador in humid boreal forests, coulees and swamps, but also in significantly drier sites. Mooses, deers and beavers can eat from it and bees use the sap to lock away intruders. The Native people use the ashes to prepare a cleaner for the hair and buckskin clothing. They also use balsam poplar to prepare a salve from the buds, an analgesic steam bath against rheumatisms, a decoction from the rotten leaves for use as an analgesic bath, a poultice to treat respiratory pains, etc.