Wednesday, June 23, 2010

Other edible fruit and plants

Gooseberries are my kids favorites and what other fruit is available in May and June? They are sour, but this native fruit is great in pies or just as a snack when we are out hiking.

That is a happy smile. My daughter loves gooseberries.

Another Missouri native is the Persimmon. A beautiful tree and a prolific producer of fruit. The fruit is not ready to eat until late fall, usually after frosts have begun. If you eat them too early, they will make your mouth pucker. We have used them in jam or eaten fresh.

A good harvest from a single tree.

In the late fall all the leaves have fallen and only the fruit remains.

I think the prettiest flower I have ever seen is the Passion Flower. It has so many layers of depth it almost looks artificial. This is a Missouri native vine that can be aggressive, but who cares if this beautiful flower is everywhere? To control it's spread, I do plant it along fence rows where I mow on both sides because it will sucker up 10' from the original plant. If you plant it on a garden fence or near a landscape bed, it can be a nuisance weed.

Here the fruit is developing. When it turns yellow you can peel it and suck the juice out of the inside. I am not sure what the relationship is to the passion fruit drinks you can get on tropical islands, but the taste is very similar. Kind of citrus, and very sweet.

Our native Redbud is a beautiful small tree with pretty heart shaped leaves and pink flowers in the spring. It does well in shade or sun and is very tough and adaptable to various soils.

The flowers are great to eat on salads or freshly grazed from the tree. The seed pods, when they are young and tender, can be eaten like snap peas or cooked with salt and butter.

1 comment:

  1. To get the passion fruit juice u simple soak the fleshy goodness in hot water so the pulp can get off the seeds and when the water turns a yellowish orange and the seeds are floating you strain it and do the juice to your taste.