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Help with Fruit Identification - Plum, Damson?
Sat 11-Sep-10
9:51 pm
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elle1010
Glasgow

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I came across a tree tonight in my mum & dad's street.  It has loads of fruit hanging from it.  My dad thinks it's some sort of plum tree, I'm not so sure. 

I've attached a picture of the fruit as well as a picture of what the tree looks like (tree picture is copied from the web).  When the fruit is on the tree it appears to be purple in colour - this is due to a sort of film that is on the fruit.  Once they are picked the 'film' comes off and they appear to have a different purple colouring.

There are no thorns on the tree.  I have opened one of the fruits up.  The flesh is yellow/ green in colour.  I have had a bite of the fruit and it has a slight sour taste.

The picture of thee tree from the web stated it was a damson plum tree.

There is a family debate going on about this at the moment so any help would be much appreciated.

 

Many thanksPic of tree from webImage EnlargerPic of fruitImage Enlarger

Sat 11-Sep-10
11:40 pm
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brightspark
Wilts

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Welcome Leanne to the forum - we have a Victoria plum tree in our garden - and these are too small and dark for that - ours are also sweeter than what you describe.

We have been foraging on and off over the years, and we're convinced that what you have are damsons.

You lucky thing!!  ok 

 

brightsparklystuff

"Work for a cause, not for applause
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Just make your absence felt"
Sun 12-Sep-10
12:12 am
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Dutchess
Rotterdam

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[Image Can Not Be Found]It looks like what we always call a bullace tree, a sort of wild plum. Damsons are similar but more oval shaped, though names might vary depending on where you live. The fruit are slightly sour when raw and wonderful when cooked. Happy picking!

Every day I give my family two choices for dinner... Take it or leave it!

Sun 12-Sep-10
4:40 pm
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Suky
Godalming, Surrey

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Bullace are, I think, green' a wild greengage.   This looks like a wild plum or miraibel plum tree.  Makes wonderful jam and chutney.  A lovely find.

Sun 12-Sep-10
5:00 pm
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Toffeeapple
North Bucks

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Ooh, two new members in one post!  Welcome ladies, thank you for joining in.

toffeeapple

I'll try that again!

Sun 12-Sep-10
8:55 pm
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shelley
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lol everyone a different answer!!

 

Here in France the name  Mirabelle is only used to describe yellow wild plums with a reddish bloom

 

the rest are simply called wild plums.  Those tend to be smaller than damsons in my experience.  But I think it is a very fluid thing!

Sun 12-Sep-10
9:20 pm
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brightspark
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Shelley, I thought the same - the mirabelles that we've had were always small, round and yellow.

However, I think that Leanne's picture from the web may be a bit misleading - perhaps looking at the fruits next to the 10p coin are not as dark as the fruits pictured on the tree.

Whether they be wild plums or damsons or bullaces (I thought bullaces were similar to mirabelles, too!), they'll still make good preserves or wines - I'm sure, Shelley, you would be able to do something with them !!!  laugh

Good Luck Leanne, with whatever you decide to make with them! ok

brightsparklystuff

"Work for a cause, not for applause
Live life to express, not to impress
Don't strive to make your presence noticed
Just make your absence felt"
Mon 13-Sep-10
1:24 am
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elle1010
Glasgow

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Many thanks for all of your replies.  You have all been so helpful and welcoming to this site.

I think they are some sort of plums, my dad wins!  I spotted another of the 'unknown' plum tree just further up from the first one.  Both are completely laden with fruit.  So much so that the branches are touching the grass under the weight of the fruit.  Yipee!  Plan on collecting more very soon.  I'm hoping the 'unknown' plums make lovely jam.

I am a newbie to foraging.  I only started to collect berries about a month ago.  Since then  I have found that I have become a bit of an addict.  Is it possible to be a foraging addict?  I now can't walk or drive anywhere without keeping my eyes peeled for berries.  As a newbie, I'm going to stick to making jam/ jelly at the moment.  Hopefully I'll be more adventurous as time goes on. 

I have spent the last 4 hours de-stalking elderberries that I spotted in my local park.  I keep telling myself the effort will be worth it. 

My freezer is currently crammed with berries that I have collected.  I have 24lbs of the 'unknown' plums, 2lbs of elderberries, 3lb of blackcurrants (that my friend donated to me) and masses upon masses of brambles.  My last bramble collection ended with me finding a lovely tick stuck to my leg when I got home.  Needless to say I was horrified and screamed the house down.  Overreaction now behind me, it will not put me off collecting more.

My friend also has 2 huge apple trees in his garden which I have pilfered. 

Just need to collect jars, which is taking ages.  I'm so impatient as I just want to get started on my jam.  I have asked everyone and anyone to keep jars for me.  On that point, can anyone recommend websites where I can buy jars cheaply?  I was thinking of purchasing some supermarket own brand jam, just so I can use the jars!

Sorry if this post is rather long.  I'm just so happy I have found other people who love foraging as much as me!  My boyfriend is sick of hearing me talk about it.  He thinks I am mad but I'm sure once my homemade jam is made, it will keep him quiet!

This site is invaluable to me and has given me so many tips and ideas.  I just hope you don't mind me asking more questions, whenever I need a bit of advice!

Many thanks again for all of yor help.  It is much appreciated. x

Mon 13-Sep-10
8:08 am
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maggenpie
Cornwall, UK

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HiwaveLeanne. Yes I reckon foraging is addictive, its like treasure hunting isn't it?
I had the same thought as you about buying cheap supermarket brands, just to dispose of the contents and use the jars - or in my case it was bottles I needed, for the lovely syrups I'm hoarding for winter drinks. I haven't actually resorted to doing that yet, but it may come to that. I'm also on the look out for small jars. Empty spice jars are handy for odd amounts but I'm looking for some twice that size for gifts.

Never assume anything - except an occasional air of intelligence.

Mon 13-Sep-10
6:04 pm
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Dutchess
Rotterdam

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Foraging is wonderful! I had to go to a birthday party on Sunday afternoon and was quite disappointed not to be able to spend the time in my vegetable patch,  but lo and behold, the party givers had a crab apple tree dripping with fruit that they didn't intend to use, so I emptied the presents out of my basket and filled it to the brim with crab apples.

So lots of crab apple and chili jelly now to be made (and no regrets after all that I went to the party!)

Every day I give my family two choices for dinner... Take it or leave it!

Mon 13-Sep-10
7:43 pm
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shelley
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Hi there!

 

I think there is a post on this site somewhere; probably this section;

however I use http://www.ascott.biz;

though the jars are still around 60p plus postage per jar (I sell jam so like uniform jars!)

 

Glad you enjoy foraging !! I became a real addict last year and like you scour every hedgerow for available fruit!!

Mon 13-Sep-10
8:09 pm
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MOS
Cannock Chase

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Hello foraging types

the other day i passed two chestnut trees that i had passed countless times before and noticed they were sweet chestnuts not conkers ,i have only driven past them for 35 years so not surprising iv'e not noticed before .

so what can i do with them Mrs MOS has a doin's for chestnut chocolate and i like roasting them and scoffing them ,but what els can be done with them

yours hopefully MOS

sit down with a cupa and the urge will subside

Mon 13-Sep-10
9:30 pm
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shelley
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you could make chestnut jam

very popular here in france

 

I dont have a recipe yet myself but I am sure you could google one

Mon 13-Sep-10
9:42 pm
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Dutchess
Rotterdam

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Is that like the stuff they put on crepes - that's really scrummy.

Every day I give my family two choices for dinner... Take it or leave it!

Mon 13-Sep-10
10:15 pm
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Danny
Scarborough, England
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MOS, I would love to find a sweet chestnut tree. Lucky devil. One use that comes to mind immediately is the delicious Italian sweet chestnut liqueur recipe 

Leanne - great to see you joining in with such enthusiasm and gusto! We think the mystery fruit are wild cherry plums. By coincidence, Fiona has made a batch of jam with them this afternoon. Really, really scrummy.

Love the user name, Caroline! Welcome on board. I think you must win a BPTSSNTACSH award (Best Profile That Says Such Nice Things About CSH big_laugh ) . Lovely. Thank you very much.

 

 

 

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