Marmalade

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661-Pete
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Re: Marmalade

Postby 661-Pete » 9 Feb 2020, 9:03am

francovendee wrote:A friend here has a large cherry tree that fruits beautifully but he gets very few to eat as the birds have defeated all his efforts to stop them stealing the fruit.
If that's his only problem, he's lucky. At least bird damage can be seen when you pick the cherries. Infestation by the cherry fruit fly, Rhagoletis cerasi, is only noticed when you bite into the cherry :shock: . In our French orchard, we can only defeat the problem by picking the fruit really early, before it is ripe, and before the flies have had a chance to lay their eggs (or before the eggs have hatched). There are supposed remedies (other than synthetic pesticides, which we don't want to use), but locally we've been told that they don't work. All our neighbours have this problem too.

Our favourite fruit tree is a specimen of Mirabelle Plum which appears to be immune from insect attack. We've had bumper crops over the years, but sadly the tree is past its best, it has shed several branches recently and probably won't last much longer.
Suppose that this room is a lift. The support breaks and down we go with ever-increasing velocity.
Let us pass the time by performing physical experiments...
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francovendee
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Re: Marmalade

Postby francovendee » 9 Feb 2020, 9:29am

661-Pete wrote:
francovendee wrote:A friend here has a large cherry tree that fruits beautifully but he gets very few to eat as the birds have defeated all his efforts to stop them stealing the fruit.
If that's his only problem, he's lucky. At least bird damage can be seen when you pick the cherries. Infestation by the cherry fruit fly, Rhagoletis cerasi, is only noticed when you bite into the cherry :shock: . In our French orchard, we can only defeat the problem by picking the fruit really early, before it is ripe, and before the flies have had a chance to lay their eggs (or before the eggs have hatched). There are supposed remedies (other than synthetic pesticides, which we don't want to use), but locally we've been told that they don't work. All our neighbours have this problem too.

Our favourite fruit tree is a specimen of Mirabelle Plum which appears to be immune from insect attack. We've had bumper crops over the years, but sadly the tree is past its best, it has shed several branches recently and probably won't last much longer.


Yuck! I'm glad i don't like cherries.
We have an old Mirabelle Plum that only fruits occasionally, I refuse to get rid of it as I like it's gnarly shape,

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Morzedec
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Re: Marmalade

Postby Morzedec » 9 Feb 2020, 10:29am

francovendee wrote:
Morzedec wrote:Hello all, I'm so very pleased that there are other cyclists out there who are so well preserved.

Whilst posting I forgot about our cherries, and we also get a fruit that looks like a small damson but is called an 'epine'. It comes on a nasty, spikey, tree; one an absolute pig to prune but worth having for the fruit.

We were taught by our farming neighbour to make what he calls an 'aperitif' from Epine, but I call it 'blow your bum off' because, although extremely tasty to drink, it has the same effect on me as baked beans do - and 'wind assisted cycling' can be dangerous to the nasal tubes of those following on behind.

Happy days,


A friend here has a large cherry tree that fruits beautifully but he gets very few to eat as the birds have defeated all his efforts to stop them stealing the fruit.


Nets.

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Morzedec
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Re: Marmalade

Postby Morzedec » 9 Feb 2020, 10:40am

661-Pete wrote:
Morzedec wrote:.... and we also get a fruit that looks like a small damson but is called an 'epine'. It comes on a nasty, spikey, tree; one an absolute pig to prune but worth having for the fruit.
"Epine" is simply French for "spine" or "thorn". I wonder if your fruit is what we know as a 'sloe'. Looking up in Wiki, it seems that Blackthorn or Sloe (Prunus spinosa), a wild form of plum very common in Britain, is known in French as Prunellier, but also other names including Epinette (but not Epine).

Or maybe it's another species of wild plum, Bullace (P. domestica subsp. insititia)? Less common than the sloe, the fruit is slightly larger and almost spherical. I don't recall the bush being particularly spiny though.

We have tried making sloe jelly, but the sloe is lacking in pectin, you need to combine with apple to get a set. The jelly was very tasty but we thought it was too much trouble: you have to pick an awful lot of sloes and pass the pulp through a cloth bag, to get a small quantity of jelly! Maybe someone knows of a more efficient recipe?


661, thank you for the info. Never bothered to look 'Epine ' up before, mainly because I don't have a computer whilst in France. I also thought that 'Sloe' might be an English equivalent, and do of course know about Sloe Gin - but what my locals farmers make ends up a thick, smooth, dark-coloured liquid, and one that has to be consumed with caution - tastes innocuous, but is far from it.

I've just found a picture.

Yum, and double yum, if you drink just slightly too much of it. Hic.

Happy days,
Image Attachments
A sloe, perhaps, found whilst cutting June 2017.JPG

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661-Pete
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Re: Marmalade

Postby 661-Pete » 9 Feb 2020, 11:22am

I think that is sloe - it doesn't look like Bullace which tend to be more densely clustered on the branch. Anyway, should be jam-able - provided you use enough sugar to overcome the sourness!
Suppose that this room is a lift. The support breaks and down we go with ever-increasing velocity.
Let us pass the time by performing physical experiments...
--- Arthur Eddington (creator of the Eddington Number).

Oldjohnw
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Re: Marmalade

Postby Oldjohnw » 9 Feb 2020, 7:25pm

Forget 'wellness'. Marmalade is the key to a long, healthy life

https://www.theguardian.com/food/2020/f ... _clipboard
John

richardfm
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Re: Marmalade

Postby richardfm » 9 Feb 2020, 7:49pm

661-Pete wrote:
francovendee wrote:A friend here has a large cherry tree that fruits beautifully but he gets very few to eat as the birds have defeated all his efforts to stop them stealing the fruit.
If that's his only problem, he's lucky. At least bird damage can be seen when you pick the cherries. Infestation by the cherry fruit fly, Rhagoletis cerasi, is only noticed when you bite into the cherry :shock: . In our French orchard, we can only defeat the problem by picking the fruit really early, before it is ripe, and before the flies have had a chance to lay their eggs (or before the eggs have hatched). There are supposed remedies (other than synthetic pesticides, which we don't want to use), but locally we've been told that they don't work. All our neighbours have this problem too.

Our favourite fruit tree is a specimen of Mirabelle Plum which appears to be immune from insect attack. We've had bumper crops over the years, but sadly the tree is past its best, it has shed several branches recently and probably won't last much longer.

That reminded of the old joke, "Q, What's worse than biting in to an apple and finding a maggot? A, Biting in to an apple and finding half a maggot"

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Morzedec
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Re: Marmalade

Postby Morzedec » 9 Feb 2020, 8:03pm

Oldjohnw wrote:Forget 'wellness'. Marmalade is the key to a long, healthy life

https://www.theguardian.com/food/2020/f ... _clipboard


To obtain the desired effect, do you eat it or rub it on?

Just for a change, please have a picture of our pet whip snake, all two metres of it: keeps the garden mice under control, climbs trees, and always says 'bonjour' in the mornings.

Happy days,
Image Attachments
April 2019 15.JPG

PDQ Mobile
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Re: Marmalade

Postby PDQ Mobile » 9 Feb 2020, 8:34pm

661-Pete wrote:I think that is sloe - it doesn't look like Bullace which tend to be more densely clustered on the branch. Anyway, should be jam-able - provided you use enough sugar to overcome the sourness!

Thank you for interesting Bullace Wiki page.

I am not so sure it is not Bullace.

The leaf size in relation to the fruit size look like more like Bullace to me. But perhaps on better S soils Sloes are bigger in leaf size.

On these poor mountain soils the Sloe grows very stunted and the leaf size is rather small.
However it is true that the Bullace often (but not always and everywhere on a tree) has densely clustered fruit. The tree is not very prickly.

"Bwlas" was often found around old houses and farms in N Wales.
A fruit which could reliably withstand the rigours of the western mountain summer!! (This is not apple country, though some old varieties manage)

Bullace is now sadly much depleted locally. Sheep and storm have taken a toll.
Personally I have seen many fine trees lost to the wind.
The slow growing timber has a particularly fine colour and grain and is extremely hard.

Here and there though, they still thrive, and replicate and every two or three summers produce a crop of branch breaking abundance.

Preferred by some to marmalade.
Always organic and unsprayed!

Having once had Damson Cheese and pâté with a baguette in a Bath cafe ( cheapest snack on menu!) and having found the combination uniquely fine, I tried the same with home made Bullace Jam with satisfying results.

francovendee
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Re: Marmalade

Postby francovendee » 10 Feb 2020, 7:45am

Morzedec wrote:
francovendee wrote:
Morzedec wrote:Hello all, I'm so very pleased that there are other cyclists out there who are so well preserved.

Whilst posting I forgot about our cherries, and we also get a fruit that looks like a small damson but is called an 'epine'. It comes on a nasty, spikey, tree; one an absolute pig to prune but worth having for the fruit.

We were taught by our farming neighbour to make what he calls an 'aperitif' from Epine, but I call it 'blow your bum off' because, although extremely tasty to drink, it has the same effect on me as baked beans do - and 'wind assisted cycling' can be dangerous to the nasal tubes of those following on behind.

Happy days,


A friend here has a large cherry tree that fruits beautifully but he gets very few to eat as the birds have defeated all his efforts to stop them stealing the fruit.


Nets.

He's tried nets but it really is a big tree and the birds are very cunning so find all the small gaps.
At one time he was so annoyed he killed about a dozen with an air rifle :evil:

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Paulatic
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Re: Marmalade

Postby Paulatic » 10 Feb 2020, 8:07am

PDQ Mobile wrote:
661-Pete wrote:I think that is sloe - it doesn't look like Bullace which tend to be more densely clustered on the branch. Anyway, should be jam-able - provided you use enough sugar to overcome the sourness!

Thank you for interesting Bullace Wiki page.

I am not so sure it is not Bullace.

The leaf size in relation to the fruit size look like more like Bullace to me. But perhaps on better S soils Sloes are bigger in leaf size.
.


I thought they were the largest and healthiest blackthorn leaves I’ve ever seen
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Morzedec
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Re: Marmalade

Postby Morzedec » 10 Feb 2020, 9:53am

Paulatic wrote:
PDQ Mobile wrote:
661-Pete wrote:I think that is sloe - it doesn't look like Bullace which tend to be more densely clustered on the branch. Anyway, should be jam-able - provided you use enough sugar to overcome the sourness!

Thank you for interesting Bullace Wiki page.

I am not so sure it is not Bullace.

The leaf size in relation to the fruit size look like more like Bullace to me. But perhaps on better S soils Sloes are bigger in leaf size.
.


I thought they were the largest and healthiest blackthorn leaves I’ve ever seen


Perhaps my pic was not the best: the fruit does in fact 'cluster' during the season, so whatever relationship the Epine has to other fruit there must be a connection somewhere. The Epine spikes can be as long as 4" (10cm) so are a real nuisance, especially as the trees grow very quickly: long gauntlets are the order of the day. When we bought the house the Epine had not been cut back for twenty-or-more years and was growing up and through all the apple trees, so I spent a less than happy three months (it's a long old garden - all 300 mtrs of it on that side) with the loppers, ripping out Epine and Ronces (brambles). It did greatly reduce that years supply of blackberries, but made the garden 3 mtrs (10 ft) wider at some points.
I'll be back in France again soon, to start pruning the apple trees: we have about four or five different sorts, three 'eaters' and two 'cookers', but I'm not that much of a horticulturalist to know what strains they are. The 'cookers' are either made into chutney, or swapped for wine in our local bar (they have a small retail section there) so no money changes hands, and the 'eaters' get - well, eaten if we are quick, because the hornets love them.
Good tip from an aged neighbour. to get rid of the hornets: cut the top off a narrow-necked plastic bottle and invert the top, then fill with a mixture of sugar and strong vinegar. I was sceptical (as always) but it works, and at the end of every day I get a bottle full of huge hornets, plus wasps and ants as well. A pity that the trick does not work for the wild boar, deer, foxes, hedgehogs, badgers, moles, and sundry other French wildlife that makes the garden its own - but then, they had the 'run' of it for many years before we arrived, so who are we to evict them?

Happy days,
Image Attachments
April 2019 33.jpg
Le Plessis The garden gate before we started.jpg

brynpoeth
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Re: Marmalade

Postby brynpoeth » 10 Feb 2020, 10:22am

I collect wild plums and cherries from roadside trees that are not tended at all, the fruits may be small but nearly all are perfect, no worms, birds, insects have got at them, why?
One plum tree is right by a busy road, by a plant making tinned soup :?
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Re: Marmalade

Postby PDQ Mobile » 10 Feb 2020, 10:40am

brynpoeth wrote:I collect wild plums and cherries from roadside trees that are not tended at all, the fruits may be small but nearly all are perfect, no worms, birds, insects have got at them, why?
One plum tree is right by a busy road, by a plant making tinned soup :?


I suspect you know but often roadside fruit has quite high levels of chemical "taint".
Formerly lead too.