The berries when ripe on the plant bear a resemblance to coffee berries, and ripen in mid- to late summer. The fruit is edible (mainly in Eastern Europe and Iran), but the unripe fruit is astringent. The fruit only fully ripens after it falls from the tree. When ripe, the fruit is dark ruby red or a bright yellow. It has an acidic flavour which is best described as a mixture of cranberry and sour cherry; it is mainly used for making jam, makes an excellent sauce similar to cranberry sauce when pitted and then boiled with sugar and orange, but also can be eaten dried. In Azerbaijan and Armenia, the fruit is used for distilling vodka, in Albania it is distilled into raki, and in Greece crana berries are used to make home-made liqueur. In Turkey and Iran it is eaten with salt as a snack in summer, and traditionally drunk in a cold drink called kızılcık şerbeti. Cultivars selected for fruit production in Ukraine have fruit up to four cm long. It is eaten in Eastern Europe in many ways including as a medicine. It is very high in vitamin C and is used to fight colds and flus.
Cornus fruit has a long history of use in traditional Chinese medicine. Known as shan zhu yu, 山茱萸, it is used to retain the jing, essence, to tonify the kidneys, and in cases of spermatorrhea.
I couldn’t post just one of the wonderfully repurposed works of art from sasafrasflowers, so here’s a screenshot of Kathy’s Etsy page. Her work combines mandalas, flowers, and garden decor. Any gardener would be delighted to receive one of these!
Alpine pink(Dianthus alpinus) forms a low cushion or bun of bright green grassy leaves. The wheel-shaped flowers are unusually large, resting just above the leaves in late spring, in shades of soft to deep pink or salmon.
One of my favorite ground cover/perennials! Running your hands over the foliage is a great feeling.
Whether you’re a city mouse or a country mouse — with a high-rise patio or 1000 acres — building an herb spiral near your kitchen allows you to partake in the sustainable permaculture revolution and have fresh organic culinary…
Depending on whom you talk to, the field of plant neurobiology represents either a radical new paradigm in our understanding of life or a slide down into murky scientific waters. Its proponents believe that we must stop regarding plants as passive objects and begin to treat them as protagonists in their own dramas. It is only human arrogance, and the fact that the lives of plants unfold in what amounts to a much slower dimension of time, that keep us from appreciating their intelligence and consequent success.