Abundant throughout the boreal forest, white spruce is a valuable timber species harvested for both pulpwood and lumber. Traditionally, the roots of white spruce were used in canoe building and basket making to lace together panels of birch bark. Equally valuable for wildlife, the seeds, needles and branches provide food and shelter for many mammals and song birds.
This dense ground cover that often resembles miniature evergreen trees is not actually a moss, but a distant relative of ferns. Horizontal ground runners allow club mosses to spread along the forest floor like a carpet. The Wood Cree used club mosses to separate raw fish eggs from their membranous sac.