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Tips and tricks – finding and harvesting nature's resources
Mon 23-May-11
4:27 pm
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sandra

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Mon 16-May-11
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Discovered a load of bilberry bushes when out walking near Rothbury this weekend, will be keeping my eye on them, only thing is they were rather high up on he Simonside hills... exercise and free food!  Lots of blackberry bushes along the walking/cycling tracks of disused railways near where we live too, at least thats a dog walking route, not a journey to the summit!

Mon 23-May-11
4:56 pm
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Toffeeapple
North Bucks

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That's a harvest waiting to happen Sandra.  In Wales the Bilberries were usually ready in August and every child had purple hands and mouths.

I'll try that again!

Mon 23-May-11
8:28 pm
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JoannaS
Latvia

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Hello Sandra, not sure we have met yet - been a tad occupied with an assignment for my course. My hubby comes from the NE and so I know Rothbury well. I live in Latvia and I haven't seen many bilberries around but I do know they exist, but I did by a little plant called brucklenes which is called cowberry in England, apparently! It is a bit like a bilberry but red, so will have to do for the time being. Also known as lingonberry TA if you remember it from your days in Swedencheers

Mon 23-May-11
8:38 pm
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sandra

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First came across folk foraging for them last year when we were caravaning in Derbyshire.  It's sloes that I'm not confident identifying. My sister picks them up near Morpeth, so she's going to come down for a dog walk with us to see if there are any blackthorns on the old railway tracks that we walk, in Co. Durham. Your husbands from the NE, this far up?

Mon 23-May-11
11:10 pm
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Terrier
York

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One of the ladies I garden for has a beautiful mirabel plum tree, last year I'd only just started working for her and didn't ask about them as it seemed greedy and I wasn't sure she didn't use them herself, anyway as I got to know her, we discussed the tree and she is veyr happy for me to take the fruit this year in exchange for a few jars of the produce - greedily looking forward to it...

There is also a farm I pass on the way to this ladies, where they just let all theit mirabels over ripen and fall off the tree...do I go and knock on the door and ask if I can have them this year?

Elderflowers still not ready round here.

Tue 24-May-11
6:01 am
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JoannaS
Latvia

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Sandra, my hubby is from Guidepost, between Ashington and Morpeth. Whereabouts were you caravanning in Derbyshire? - funnily enough that is where we used to live, just north of Chesterfield.cheers

Tue 24-May-11
7:53 am
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shelley
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Terrier said:

 

There is also a farm I pass on the way to this ladies, where they just let all theit mirabels over ripen and fall off the tree...do I go and knock on the door and ask if I can have them this year?  YES!

Elderflowers still not ready round here.gosh!Ours have been and gone!

Tue 24-May-11
9:44 pm
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Terrier
York

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Hi shelley

Just double checked our elder hedging this morning, nope definately still small and green. Weather has been cool for a few weeks, not sure if this has held them back somewhat.

Wed 25-May-11
5:05 am
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Hattie
Bucks/Oxon Border

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wave Down here in Bucks & Oxon they are in full bloom everywhere...in fact it looks like a bumper year.

In the autumn there will be plenty of berries to make a great cordial from them to protect against winter colds & sore throats. 

 

"The beautiful is as useful as the useful...perhaps more so."

from Les Miserables

Wed 25-May-11
5:21 am
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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I winder if it is a bumper year up our way. The first ones have just blossomed outside my window this morning. Must keep my eyes peeled when I am driving around today.

Never knowingly underfed

Wed 25-May-11
7:03 am
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Sooliz
Somerset

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We've a few elders in our garden and they too have been in bloom for quite some time.  I'm going to have a go at making the cordial with the berries for the first time this year. laugh

learning to love veg…..except celery :-O

Wed 25-May-11
7:24 am
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Hattie
Bucks/Oxon Border

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Years ago I made a wonderful drink with a mixture of blackberries, elderberries & brandy..... a kind of Autumn alcoholic Cordial.  It was quite wonderful......such a great life-saver when I felt flu-ey or had a cold. Unfortunately I don't think I saved the recipe.......I will have to see if I can find one on the internet.  If anyone finds one please let me know. I think it also had various spices in it.  bow

 

"The beautiful is as useful as the useful...perhaps more so."

from Les Miserables

Wed 25-May-11
7:57 am
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shelley
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I think there are a few recipes for it on this site; although the one from TA is more a coulis; I didnt add spices but you can and there is another recipe on here for that.  My kids love it and it was wonderful against coughs!

Wed 25-May-11
9:19 am
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Hattie
Bucks/Oxon Border

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Many thanks Shelley, I'll have an exploring session.  wave

 

"The beautiful is as useful as the useful...perhaps more so."

from Les Miserables

Wed 25-May-11
12:44 pm
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Toffeeapple
North Bucks

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They are only just starting to flower here.  Our Council had new landscape contractors and they chopped down 'my' local tree.  Bastards!  I think I'll try and grow a couple from seed this year.

I'll try that again!

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