In Algonquian villages, life followed the four seasons. In spring, after planting the crops, eastern tribes left their main villages and camped along the coast or by rivers to gather food.
The men fished, landing different types of fish each month. They also ventured into the forests to collect berries and nuts. Much of the food they gathered in summertime was preserved and stored in their permanent villages for use during the winter, when nothing grew. In the fall, they returned to their villages to harvest crops, collect wild fruits, and hunt game.
Southern Algonquians relied more on farming, but they too collected seasonal food from the ocean, rivers, and forests. The Algonquians who farmed started by clearing the land with a method called slash-and-burn. The men used axes to cut around the trunks of trees. When the trees died, they were burned, and the ashes were used to fertilize the soil, which made it good for growing crops. The land would produce good crops for a few years. Eventually, it would no longer be as fertile, and the whole village would relocate.