Bear Berries - Kallait Kallaqutillu ᑲᓪᓚᐃᑦ ᑲᓪᓚᖁᑎᓪᓗ
berries have thick skin and a mealy taste.
berries can be dried for storage.
dried berries can be ground and cooked into a porridge.
dried berries can be popped when fried in grease over low flame.
the variety in Nunavut is Common bearberry (Arctostaphylos uva-ursi).
grows in dry open woods and gravelly or sandy soils in arctic and alpine regions.
warning: may cause nausea or constipation if eaten in quantity.
warning: prolonged use may case stomach and liver problems and should be avoided by children and pregnant or breast-feeding women.
Scientific name: Arctous alpina, Arctous rubra
Inuktitut name: Kallat (Coral Harbour), kublak
Last century, the Arctic bearberry species were considered to be in the genus
Arctostaphylos. Most of the species in that genus occur on the central coast of
California. The Arctic species are different because the leaves have finely toothed
margins, and the edible fruit contain five seeds. Fruit of Arctostaphylos are not good
for eating, and contain ten drupelets. These differences led botanists to decide the
Arctic plants should be in a different genus.
The leaves of the plant were picked and used to make a tea to relieve stomach aches.
The berries were, and still are, picked to eat. They are very juicy, but rather tasteless
and dull. They are often mixed with other berries. source
Photo: #01 Alpine Bearberry - Last years bearberries, flowering.