[NAFEX] Mystery Berry Positive ID

Richard MURPHY murphman108 at msn.com
Thu Sep 6 23:08:37 EDT 2007

If you all would like to see an oddball..........

I have these things growing in my hedgerow in zone 4 Maine.
Not just one tree, but several.

I sent in a hi-res photo a while ago, but we won't need that one any more.

The plant, without doubt, is an Indian Plum / Oso Berry / Bird Cherry / Skunk Bush / Indian Peach.
Not a Prunus anything. The little plums don't have the longitudinal (bum crack) I don't know the correct term,
that a plum has, nor is it shaped like a cherry. It is shaped like a chubby Lima bean.

They are :Osmaronia Cerasiformis

The book that ID them is Wild Edible Fruits and Berries by Marcia Furlong and Virginia Pill.
The photo on page 23 is a Slam-Dunk copy of them.
Google Images also backed this up.

The closest Prunus was the Pin Cherry; close but no cigar.
I have some protective netting around one small cluster for a taste.
Right away, I'll tell you all that this doesn't appear to promise much in the way of Yummy stuff.
I found one 'ripe' one, and it is basically a big flat seed, a few milligrams of 'Raisin Paste', and a purple wrapper.

Anybody have these ?
Anybody want any seeds ?
Anybody wanna expand my vocabulary for me?


BTW I got that book, used, for 3 bucks. Small but has odd stuff.

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