Tilia americana, American Basswood leaves (Photo By: Schzmo / Wikimedia Commons) The leaves of this plant are edible all spring, summer and fall. The cambien layer tastes sweet and something like cucumber. The Linden tree (Tilia sp. The tips of young shoots and inner bark can be chewed raw or cooked, perhaps used to make a broth. Basswood Survival Uses. Basswood is a large, (70-80 feet in height), wide-spreading, round-topped tree with dense foliage. Mulberry leaves has also been used for centuries to make tea. 3. ), also known as Basswood, Honey-Tree, Bee Tree or Lime Tree, is a common deciduous tree found throughout the northern hemisphere.It’s easily identified by its utterly gigantic heart-shaped leaves (6-8 inches across) and intensely fragrant flowers. The inner fibers from the Basswood make some of the best natural cordage on the planet. American Basswood Leaves - Photo by Paul Wray, Iowa State University. The leaves are very mucilaginous and may pose a texture issue for some. Basswood flower cluster and flower bract. They have the crunch of iceber g lettuce, but with more nutrition. For example, one of the most important features is that the basswood is entirely edible. Basswood leaves are distinctly asymmetrical (lopsided) and are shiny when first emerging in the spring. The leaves can also be stuffed with a rice and spice mixture in the same fashion as grape leaves. They can then be eaten raw or cooked and have a bland flavor and slightly mucilaginous texture. Close-up of Basswood flowers. The rich green upper side of the leaf is in contrast to the underleaf's paler green to almost-white color. While edible all throughout the summer, Basswood leaves are best when young and smaller than a silver dollar. Identifying Linden Trees. Its heart-shaped leaves and fragrant flowers in June make it especially attractive for people, while songbirds and blue jays are attracted to its seeds and use the tree for shelter. American basswood is native to the Chicago area and is often used as a specimen or dense shade tree. You can also dry them and grind into flour. I also like to steep 10 or so flowers in a cup of hot water for 10 minutes to make a fragrant tea that I very much enjoy. They taste like lettuce but have a mucilaginous texture, young leaves are the most tender but older leaves are still good to eat. Nutritional Value: Leaves contain vitamins and minerals, inner bark has carbohydrates Other uses: cordage from bark, not a good firewood Basswood tree used in urban landscaping. I already wrote about the young, heart-shaped leaves being edible in spring. In my last course, 2 adult men could not break a 1/2″ thick strip of basswood bark. The leaves can be consumed during the spring as salad. Young, unfurling basswood leaves can be used as a salad green. Basswood Tree Identification . Basswood leaves and seedpods. Katuk (Sauropus androgynus) Basswood’s tiny nut is edible … Delicious edible leaves – especially in spring “Bass” comes from the word “bast,” which is an old word for rope. Basswood leaf and flower/nut bract (long, narrow leaf-like thing). They need to be cooked, and the water can then be discarded for a side dish for greens. They make a great lettuce substitute in salads or sandwiches. As for the leaves, they are edible but with some restriction. It is native through out southeastern Canada and most of the eastern United States; it is found in every county in Iowa. Basswood's asymmetrical and lopsided heart-shaped leaf is the largest of all broadleaf trees, nearly as wide as it is long at between 5 and 8 inches. Now that we’ve established how to identify the tree, it’s time to discuss its usefulness when SHTF and in general. They have the crunch of iceber g lettuce, but with more nutrition wide-spreading, round-topped with! 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