Salish Food Plants
With each season comes new growth and we are thankful for our plant relatives to return to us year after year. When we practice reciprocal foraging habits and take care of the natural world we are being good relatives. Here are the plants that grow in the various habitats of the Northwest region in their seasonal stages (root, shoot, flower, fruit).
Spring (sqepc)/ Summer (sʔanłq)
These are the most important months in terms of food gathering. Following the cycle of all traditional foods (fish, game, and plants) the Salish people pay careful attention to the landscape. This is the time to check on plants in their various stages of growth as well as come together for First Feast celebrations. We honor each and every plant as they come to us anew in the spring and summer months as much of our gathering, processing, and sharing our plant foods occurs during this time.
Fall (sčʔey)/Winter (sʔistc̓)
As the weather turns colder, the fall is for processing and preserving summers bounty. Once the first snow falls, we use this time to bring out our songs and stories that we share during the winter. Dried teas and medicines are utilized during the cold months and dried foods (berries, roots, meat) are eaten. These months are for spending time with one another sharing Coyote stories and preparing for the new year ceremonies.