These 20 edible trees for survival are the most important trees you will know as a survivalist.
Trees have been useful to humans for thousands of years because those trees can fully support us. These trees will provide for all your basic needs if you know how to correctly harvest and use them.
If you can, growing these trees will help you greatly in the long run. However, many of these trees are relatively common in North America and Europe, so you’ll be able to use them without growing them.
In this article, I will cover all the trees that will help you with survival and will make you significantly more prepared.
Without further ado, let’s jump into the 20 trees you should know and why.
1. Pine Trees
Pine trees are by far one of the most common edible wild plants in the world, that is why this is the best wilderness survival tree for you.
These trees often make up most of the trees in forests. You will know it is a pine tree if it has needles and pines.
The pine needle is edible and can be brewed into a tea full of vitamins A and C. The inner wood can be eaten raw and has a sweet flavor. It can be dried and ground into a powder to be used as a thickener or in bread.
Pine tree resins can also be used to waterproof various things, such as boats and containers. You can also use the resins as a preservative.
Pine trees are tropical, and so the sap is more or less sweet. When you rub the pine needle and bark, you get a tannin which can reduce bleeding. You can also use the pine needle to make pine needle tea.
These can be used for medicinal purposes and can also be used as a mild poison. Pine resin tea can be used to treat respiratory ailments, especially among those with asthma. Pine tree bark can also be used to treat coughs and colds.
Pine cones are also edible. However, you will have to remove the pine bark to eat it.
2. Mulberry Trees
Mulberry trees are common throughout North America. You can eat the berries raw, dried, and powdered.
Morus alba(the Mulberry tree shown in the picture), or white mulberry has a long history with the Chinese, because it was used as a medicine, treating toothaches, tinnitus, and many more things.
Mulberry leaves can also help with arthritis. They are known for their anti-inflammatory properties.
Mulberry leaves may help with allergies and acne, and improve the symptoms of asthma. Another medicinal use of mulberry leaves is to treat jaundice. As with other natural medicines, there is a bit of a challenge with the exact dosage that you should take.
The leaves can also be used as a nutritious food for livestock(cattles, horses, etc.) You can also obtain fiber from the Mulberry bark and young stems.
You can also make paper from the bark fibers.
The mulberry tree leaf has traditionally been the best flavoring for Chinese Sesame Tea.
3. White Birch Trees
This wild edible plant is very useful to survival, because they are a source of syrup, have healthy leaves containing vitamin C, the interior bark is edible after being dried, and the bark can be cut into fine strips to act as noodles in a soup.
The birch sap, called betulinic acid can act as an anti-tumor, and can help to treat HIV.
However, the White Birch has a few more features to add on to that. Their sap is edible and sweet and can be made into a syrup or fermented to make vinegar or beer.
The young leaves and shoots are edible. You can use the outer bark as a shield from snow blindness by cutting a strip and placing it over your eyes. You can use the natural holes to see. To add on, the wood is one of the best tinder and burns fast.
Some of the species of birch are better suited to the forest than others. Common Birch trees are the Norway and Black Birch.
Different species of birch, like Swamp Birch, are native to North America, whereas the Norway Birch is native to Norway, Sweden and Finland.
4. Alder Trees
These edible plants are used to heal surface and internal wounds. If used as a tea, the bark and leaves are great for treating inflammatory, hemorrhoids, fevers, and tonsillitis.
They will also improve the quality of the soil around them by improving nitrogen levels nutrient levels. This is an amazing choice for almost any homestead or garden.
5. Beech Trees
Beech trees are also medical trees. The leaves can be used to treat frostbite. The leaves can also be converted into a poultice(A soft moist mass of adhesive substances, usually heated and spread on cloth) to treat burns.
The Beech nuts are also edible and nutritious, giving both fat and oil. Beechwood is also known to be a good source of firewood.
The bark can be used to create incense sticks. The species’ bark also gives a good varnish or adhesive to wood.
In Europe, Beechwood is mainly used for the making of furniture, cabinets and wicker furniture. It can also be used for traditional wooden sculpture. The tree is also a source of deep green dyed wood.
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By the way, here are 13 common edible weeds.
6. Willow Trees
Willow trees, also called Sallows and Osiers have many survival purposes as well. The edible bark of each Willow tree has salicin, which is closely related to aspirin; therefore it can be used as a painkiller, to treat fevers, and to treat headaches as well.
Their stems are also very flexible and can be used for making items such as baskets. Their inner bark is also edible, and if dried can be used in cereal or bread.
The leaves can also be used to make a weed killer, just like ivy, salvia and other plants in the same family.
The leaves are used to coat your herbs with oil, which may cause some bitterness; however if you do not eat the leaves, this flavor will still be present.
On top of that, they can be crushed, and the oil can be inhaled
7. Oak Trees
Oak trees are most commonly found throughout North America. These trees make highly nutritious acorns that can be eaten raw in some species, therefore it is always better to cook if possible.
If dried it will become less bitter and you will be able to grind it up into flour.
8. Elm Trees
Elm trees are amazing medical trees that is of course multi-purpose. You can make poultice with the bark to treat burns and other deep wounds.
You can also make tea from it’s bark and it will be a good source of nutrition to heal broken bones faster and prevent diarrhea, as well as helping other bladder and intestinal problems. This is also another good tree for firewood that will burn instantaneously.
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9. Basswood Trees
Basswood or Linden trees is a tree that serves mixed purposes as well. Young Basswood leaves can be eaten raw and adult leaves can be eaten cooked. The sap can be converted into syrup. The flowers can be eaten raw or with a tea (only use a little.)
You can get tough fibers out of these trees from the inner bark by soaking it in water and boiling, followed by rubbing on a stick or something similar to seperate the fibers for fine thread, yarn, or cord.
10. Hackberry Trees
these are exceptionally rare, since they’re mostly found in Florida andTexas. However, if you do happen to run into these trees, you are in for a treat.
The Hackberry fruit is edible, and delicious. The fruit and seed can be crushed to create a delicious food full of protein, fat and carbohydrates.
You can store the whole fruit for many months simply by placing it in a paper bag. The berries are easily collected by placing a tarp or blanket under the tree, followed by shaking the branches.
11. Honey Locust Trees
Honey Locust trees are found mainly in eastern North America. The seeds are edible raw, with a taste similar to raw peas, and they are high in protein and carbohydrates.
The pulp of the seed pods can be eaten raw or made into a sugary substance. Young seed pods are edible cooked. The wood is hard and can be used for making tools.
These trees are native to the eastern United States, are dense, very tall, straight trees with one to five (but rarely more than eight) stems growing from the base. They grow up to 20 to 30 feet, have many branches and are a dark green color.
Its fragrant flowers open in the early morning and become a dark reddish brown before daybreak.
The common name honey locust comes from its delicious honey, similar to that of the Black Walnut.
The Honey Locust is native to the eastern half of the United States, from Ohio to Louisiana. Its common names include Kentucky, Black Walnut, Yellow Locust, and Black Walnut.
12. Tea Trees
This tree is mainly located in Australia. This tree well known as “medicine bottle” in a tree. The oil from tea trees can be used to get rid almost any infection.
When properly made into a tea, it can be used to get rid of gum abscesses (an infection in the space between the teeth and the gums) and other mouth infections.
The leaves can also be used to treat skin wounds prevent worsening of skin infections. If you inhale the scent from crushed tea tree leaves, it will help you get rid of colds.
If you are going to make tea tree oil or use it for medical needs, make sure that you only use small amounts(once or twice), because overuse can lead to collapsed lungs and worsening of infections.
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13. Apple Trees
This is a classical American tree that has a lot more to offer than apples. The edible bark can help to treat diarrhea and fever when eaten.
Stewed apples can be used to treat constipation, as a laxative. If you bake the apples, you can make poultice, which you can use to treat burns, deep wounds, or eat to reduce sore throats and headaches.
14. Ash Trees
The Ash tree is another medical tree that can be found in the US and Europe, because it is more common.
The leaves and the tips of the twigs can treat gout, rheumatism, and jaundice if consumed. Their wood is also strong, and commonly makes baseball bats, and other tools.
15. Hawthron Trees
The Hawthorn tree, also known as Quickthorn, Thornapple, and Hawberry tree is located around the North hemisphere of the world and is relatively common.
This tree makes tea called “cardiac tonic”, which is brewed from the Hawthorn leaves. The tea can decrease blood pressure, while promoting better cardiac health. The bark is edible raw as well.
They are characterized by long, straight, straight-bladed branches, usually growing about 20 feet from the trunk and divided into several contorted lateral branches.
16. Hazel Trees
Hazel trees make hazelnuts and are found mostly in Scotland. Consuming hazelnuts could help to treat kidney problems, along with filling you up with nutrients, antioxidants, and decreasing inflammation.
The trees interior bark is can be used to make poultice. If the hazelnuts are mixed with animal grease, you will then have yourself a strong insect repellent.
17. Maple trees
Maple trees, commonly found in North America can make special poultice from its leaves. Maple tree poultice helps to treat sore eyes and sore breasts for women.
If you use the bark, and make it a tea, you can then use it to treat kidney infections, the common cold, and Bronchitis.
Maple seeds are edible if cooked, the small seeds giving off a sweat taste, while the larger seeds will boast a bitter flavor.
18. Poplar Trees
Poplar trees are found in the northern hemisphere. The interior bark can be eaten raw and has a sweet, starch-like taste.
The interior bark can be ground up into a nutritious flour or simply eaten. The catkins from the poplar tree are also edible.
19. Cedar Trees
Cedar trees are medical trees as well. They are located in the North-Western part of the United states.
You can form cedar tea)from the twigs and branches. This tea can help with Scurvy and fevers. You can also use this as a bug repellent.
20. Ironwood Trees
The Ironwood tree is found in South-Western parts of the United States (Mainly Arizona.) These trees have strong wood to make tools.
The tree produces edible nuts. This tree also serves medical purposes, take a few chunks of the wood and add them to a very hot bath to ease sore muscles and joints.
In this article, you learned 20 of the best edible trees for survival that you can safely use – and most of these can also treat symptoms as well.
I hope I have this gave you a good idea of what trees to know as a survivalist. Consider following us or sharing this content, and have an amazing day! If you enjoyed this, you might enjoy 11 plants that are edible & nutritious for survival.
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It is a good list. However, you didn’t list the Mesquite. It is significant in the Desert Southwest providing food, medicine, fibers and wood.
Amazing article on the best trees for survival mate!