White pine is a useful expectorant, loosening phlegm so that it can be coughed up and out. 1 tsp. young pine shoots are steeped in 1 cup water, then drunk a mouthful at a time. There are many white pine varieties and the one we use is called the Eastern white pine. (There’s also a western white pine, Japanese white pine, weeping white pine and more). The Eastern white pine was an important export for the early colonists in this country because the tall, straight trees were highly valued by the British for ship’s masts. Wood and stone were the main building materials of this time and the lush woodlands of North America were a rich bounty. So, of course, most of the trees were cut down and sold.