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Thread: Pine Needle Tea

  1. #1
    Woodsman Adventure Wolf's Avatar
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    Default Pine Needle Tea

    Pine needle tea is a favorite starting point for people to learn about forging and wild edibles. Every survival book that talks about forging, that I've read, usually starts with pine needle tea and dandelions, because both plants are common.

    Pine needle tea is high in vitamin C, and is easy to make.

    Pine Needle Tea Step by Step:

    1. Take some green pine needles off of low hanging branches.
    2. Use your knife to cut off the brown section that connects the needles to the tree.
    3. Cut the pine needles finely like a herb.
    4. Boil a pot or cup of water.
    5. Add needles
    6. Boil the needles for 15 to 20 minutes
    7. Pull the pot or cup off the heat source, and let the water cool to drinking point.
    8. Enjoy.


  2. #2
    Senior Member natertot's Avatar
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    Yep, good stuff. I just take the needles (no cutting anything) and put them in a cup of water. I boil the cup with the needles in it. I then add a small packet of sugar and enjoy it. Some will also add honey.
    ”There's nothing glorious in dying. Anyone can do it.” ~Johnny Rotten

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    Junior Member Tokwan's Avatar
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    Any certain pine needles or any pine needles from any coniferous trees?
    I'm a Gramp who is not computer savvy, give me a slab and the rock ages tablet..I will do fine!

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    Senior Member Graf's Avatar
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    Stay away from flat pine needles with red berrys.
    I have used Red pine but White pine are highest in vitamain C easily identified by having 5 needles in each cluster and white having 5 letters, I use a tea ball to put the needles in. Important to know that water should be boiled prior to adding needles, boiling water with needles already in water will boil out much of the useful vitamins. i boil the water then move the water from the high heat add my needles, cover and let soak for 15 minutes.
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    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    Around here it's easy to pick. Any pine that has needles in five clusters is safe and good. Generically those are white pines but there are a lot of different species within that moniker. I've tried the needles cut up and whole and can't tell a difference so I don't bother cutting them any more. Good stuff.

  6. #6
    Senior Member Graf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick View Post
    Around here it's easy to pick. Any pine that has needles in five clusters is safe and good. Generically those are white pines but there are a lot of different species within that moniker. I've tried the needles cut up and whole and can't tell a difference so I don't bother cutting them any more. Good stuff.
    Rick- Thats interesting to know what other pines have 5 needle clusters, i've never heard or seen always willing to learn. The cutting i was told allows better flow of nutrients into the water through the cuttings, what do you think about that?
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  7. #7
    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    There are nine (9) species of white pine in the U.S. These are the only ones with five clusters of needles. They are:

    Rocky Mountain bristlecone pine - Pinus aristita
    Sugar Pine - Pinus labertiana
    White Bark Pine - Pinus albicaulis
    Foxtail Pine - Pinus balfouriana
    Western White Pine - Pinus monticola
    Chihuahua White Pine - Pinus strobiformis
    Great Basin bristlecone pine - Pinus longaeva
    Eastern White Pine - Pinus strobus
    Limber Pine - Pinus flexilis

    The nutrient issue makes sense. I crush cooking herbs to release the oils for the same reason and to enhance the flavor. So it's reasonable to me that more nutrients might be released by cutting the needles. I just don't notice any difference in flavor. I think pine is the cleanest tasting tea I've ever had. Cleanest is probably not the right word but that's how my mouth feels after I drink it.

  8. #8
    Senior Member Graf's Avatar
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    Thanks for the info on the trees
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  9. #9
    Woodsman Adventure Wolf's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick View Post
    Around here it's easy to pick. Any pine that has needles in five clusters is safe and good. Generically those are white pines but there are a lot of different species within that moniker. I've tried the needles cut up and whole and can't tell a difference so I don't bother cutting them any more. Good stuff.
    I'm with Rick on this one. I've never been able to tell the difference either.

  10. #10
    Senior Member MrFixIt's Avatar
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    I always pack a few coffee filters. After boiling/steeping, I pour the contents thru the filter into a drinking cup.
    Removes the needles and any other contaminants.
    Also useful for filtering larger contaminants from your "wild" water source.
    Can be used in emergency 1st aid situations.
    They weigh next to nothing and pack easily in a small container.
    When all else fails, read the directions, and beware the Chihuahuacabra!

  11. #11
    Senior Member natertot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rick View Post
    I think pine is the cleanest tasting tea I've ever had. Cleanest is probably not the right word but that's how my mouth feels after I drink it.
    I agree with this. It is almost like a non-mint version of mouth wash clean. I also find that there is even a good aftertaste to pine tea.
    ”There's nothing glorious in dying. Anyone can do it.” ~Johnny Rotten

  12. #12
    Administrator Rick's Avatar
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    That's actually a great description. That hit the nail on the head.

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