CYCLES_Ojibwe_Plant_Names

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Ojibwe Naming of Wild
Plants
Dwight A. Gourneau
Adapted from Michael Price’s
TRIBES Presentation
Wild Plant Name Suffixes
in Ojibwe Language
 “-jiibik” – root









“-imin” – berry, fruit, seed
“-bag” – leaf
“-pin” – potato-like, tuber
“-aatig” – trunk, stem
“-waak” – tree
“-ashk” – long grassy stem
“-mizh” – small tree, shrub
“-aandag” – bough
“Mashkii-” – bog
Latin-Ojibwemowin
Classification
Round Leaf Sundew
Waawiiye-niigeganzh
(Drosera rotundifolia)
Mashkiig – Bog or Peatland
Mashkikii – “medicine from the earth or bog”
Mashkiig – Bog or Peatland
Mashkiigwaatig
Tamarack
(Larix laricina)
Mashkiigomin
Small Cranberry
(Vaccinium oxycoccos)
Mashkiig – Bog or Peatland
Mashkiigobag
Labrador Tea or
Swamp Tea
(Ledum groenlandicum)
Mashkiigojiibik
Marsh Five Finger
(Potentilla palustris)
Waabashkikii - Swamp
Waabashkikii - Swamp
Waabashkikiibag
Leatherleaf
(Chamaedaphne calyculata)
Meadow Sweet
(Spiraea alba)
Labrador or Swamp Tea
(Ledum groenlandicum)
Anungobikobiise
“Star that lives on the
water”
White Water Lilly
(Nymphaea odorata)
Ladyslippers
Makizinan
“Moccasins”
Yellow Ladyslipper
(Cypripedium caleolus)
Agobizowin
“A remedy tied on a wound”
Showy Ladyslipper
(Cypripedium reginae)
Naming Categorization
 Descriptive
 Utility
 Medicinal Use
 Food Source
 Spirituality
Descriptive
Omakikiiwidaasan
“Frog Leggings”
Pitcher Plant
(Sarracenia purpurea)
Waabooyaabag
“Blanket Leaf”
Common Mullein
(Verbascum thapsus)
Utility
Miskojiibik
Bloodroot
(Sanquinaria canadensis)
- Used as a red dye
Ozaawijiibik
Goldenthread
(Coptis trifolia)
- Used as a yellow dye
Utility
Anaakanashk
“Anaakan – woven mat”
Softstem Bulrush
(Scirpus validus)
Gichigamiwashk
“Tall Grass of the Great Waters”
Nabagashk
“Tall Grass with Flat Leaf”
Common Cattail
(Typha latifolia)
Utility
Wiigwaasaatig
Paper Birch
(Betula papyrifera)
Utility
Aagimaak
“Snowshoe-making tree”
 Aagim - snowshoe
Black Ash
(Fraxinus nigra)
- Used to make snowshoes;
- Inner bark strips - baskets
Medicinal Use
Oshkinigiikwe Aniibiish
Tansy (Tanacetum vulgare)
“Young Woman’s Tea”
Zhaabozigan
Common Milkweed
(Asclepias syriaca)
“Laxative; used to produce
post-birth milk flow”
Food Source
Minoomin
“the good seed”
Wild Rice
(Zizania palustris)
Ode”imin
“heart fruit”
Wild Strawberry
(Fragaria virginiana)
Food Source
Aninaatig Ziinzibaakwad
Sugar Maple
(Acer saccharum)
Apakweshkwe
• Apakwe – “to put on roof”
Nabagashk
“Tall Grass with Flat Leaf”
(Typha latifolia)
- Edible bulbs and spring shoots
Spirituality
Giizhig(aandag)
White Cedar
(Thuja occidentalis)
“Giizhig” – “sky or day”
Wiingashk
“aromatic herb”
Sweetgrass
(Hierochloe odorata)
Spirituality
Nookwezigan
White Sage
(Artemisia ludoviciana)
“soothing grandmother
medicine”
- spiritual purification
Daisy Fleabane
(Erigeron strigosus)
- used for headaches
Other Ojibwe Plant Names
Giiziso-Mashkikii
“Sun Medicine”
Goldenrod
(Solidago canadensis)
Apaakozigan
“smoking mixture”
Bearberry
(Arctostaphalos uva-ursi)
Other Ojibwe Plant Names
Ajidamoowaanow
“Squirrel’s Tail”
Woolly Yarrow
(Achillea millefolium)
- flowers smoked ceremonially
Evergreens - Relationships
“aandag” – “bough”
Gaawaandag – White Spruce
Zezegaandag – Black Spruce
Giizhigaandag – White Cedar
Okikaandag – Jack Pine
“Zhin” – “to lie down”
Zhingwaak – White Pine
Zhingobii – Red or Norway Pine
Zhingob – Balsam Fir
Miskwaawaak – Red Cedar
Miskwaawaakaandag – Red Cedar bough
Makwa – Black Bear
Zhigaagawanzh
“Onions”
Zhigaag
“Skunk”
Zhigaagong
“Where skunk’s live”
Chi-Miigwech
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