Ground Juniper in Newfoundland
Information taken from the book “MICMAC MEDICINES” Remedies and Recollections. By Laurie Lacey
This plant is very common in the Maritime Provinces. The Micmac used juniper for many purposes. The gum was used to heal cuts, sores, burns, and sprains, and to treat colds and influenza. The tips of juniper branches were steeped in water to make a beverage. The inner bark and juice were used to treat stomach ulcers. The former would be boiled and steeped in water and taken as a tea. Juniper roots were referred to as “rheumatism roots”, and were considered very effective for treating the problem. The roots were steeped in water and the liquid rubbed on the rheumatic area, or mixed into a salve for this purpose. The plant was also used to treat kidney ailments and as a urinary tract medicine.
A Micmac woman at Shubenacadie said that juniper tea was a good all-purpose tonic. She said that the entire plant should be steeped in water and that it is best to collect the plant in the autumn, near apple picking season. Steep it until the water turns colour.