[NAFEX] to eat or not to eat...

Eddie Earles jas39a at att.net
Thu Apr 2 07:10:29 EDT 2009

This isn't exactly a fruit, but the young tender leaves of the greenbriar vine are not only edible, but delicious.  They make a handy snack in the woods at Springtime.

I have also come to realize that most folks have no idea that paw-paws are edible.  

I spent most of my adult life working outdoors in isolated rural areas, and frequently snacked on wild plums, huckleberries, pawpaws, pecans, or anything else that was seasonally available.

Eddie Earles
  ----- Original Message ----- 
  From: Stephen Sadler 
  To: 'North American Fruit Explorers' 
  Sent: Wednesday, April 01, 2009 8:47 PM
  Subject: [NAFEX] to eat or not to eat...

  That’s how it is here with olive trees.  It used to be they were extremely common.  You didn’t grow olives, as it was easier to walk anywhere and find a tree no one was harvesting.  Then people decided they were too messy to be decorative, and developers found them too in the way to be unbulldozed.  So they’re herded away in orchards…

  They’re still around , just not as numerous.  

  So those poisonous black cherries: the leaves, seeds, etcetera are poisonous, and animals that eat those in quantity can get sick, even die.  Same could be said of sweet red cherries, yet somehow we manage to eat the fruit – the part without such a concentration of amygdalin – safely.  I think that may be the rationale – or maybe somebody cooked up some buckthorn.


  So what other delicious fruits are there that people regard as inedible?  Or what fruits are unwisely eaten?  I submit pokeberries in the latter category.  In the former: Loquats.  Strawberry tree (arbutus unedo) – I find the fruit ranging from bland yet pleasant to very good, and it dries well, concentrating the flavor.  What else? Ice plant fruits (Carpobrutus edulis – you’d think the ‘edulis’ would be a hint you can eat these), fuchsia berries, pyracantha berries (not so good fresh, but make a nice pyracantha-berry-butter)… and there’s the person nearby whose passiflora fruits prolifically, but lets them all fall uneaten.  




  ~ Stephen


  From: nafex-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org [mailto:nafex-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of Kevin Moore
  Sent: Wednesday, April 01, 2009 9:15 AM
  To: North American Fruit Explorers
  Subject: Re: [NAFEX] Loquats


  I don't know why they won't eat them. Maybe the skins are too tough? Anyway, the birds seem to be leaving the fruit alone this year so I'll have plenty to put up. We're right in the middle of the season down here in Cajun country. 
  I understand what you mean about people not eating fruit. The locals down here mostly ignore all the Black Cherries that grow wild here. They have even told me they were poisonous. It seems that the laxative effect from eating too many cherries has them convinced that they are inedible. Could be the effect is more pronounced with these. I'm having a hard time locating the trees anymore. With all the development and older farmers dying off, the trees are disappearing too.

  Kevin Z9



  From: Stephen Sadler <Docshiva at Docshiva.org>
  To: North American Fruit Explorers <nafex at lists.ibiblio.org>
  Sent: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 4:10:44 PM
  Subject: Re: [NAFEX] Loquats



  I’m a loquat fan.  Thanks for that link!


  Kevin, what the heck is wrong with your family?  Do they think only supermarket fruit is edible?  If they weren’t so fragile, they’d be in markets.  There are many loquat trees here in Sacramento that people regard only as decorative, and tons of fruit falls to the ground.  What a waste.  Anyway, for recipes, I had been treating them as apricots (only they’re sweeter than most) or peaches; actually, there are many recipes for other fruits I’ve used.  

  Still, for almost anything, I freeze, dry, or can, then make other recipes later, including preserves, syrups, pie filling and the like.  I suppose you could candy them, but I don’t find that candied fruits have a long list of non-fruitcake uses.


  ~ Stephen

  Looking forward to loquat season


  From: nafex-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org [mailto:nafex-bounces at lists.ibiblio.org] On Behalf Of piper33 at verizon.net
  Sent: Tuesday, March 31, 2009 6:08 AM
  To: nafex at lists.ibiblio.org
  Subject: Re: [NAFEX] Loquats


  First off... Do not eat, chew, or swallow the seeds. The loquat seed may be highly toxic. Remove the fleshly fruit from the seed before eating or cooking.

  OK, now for recipes. Look at http://www.loquatworld.com/LoquatRecipes.html for jelly, jam , ice cream sauce, wine, and many other  recipes.

  To the group: I have loquat seedlings in the ground that survived a severe winter as far as Seattle goes. Any idea on how many years before a seedling starts blooming?
  -Mark Lee, Seattle, zone 8, plums and honeyberry now in bloom

  Mar 30, 2009 01:39:00 AM, nafex at lists.ibiblio.org wrote:

  The Loquats are ripe right now. I am the only one in the family who will eat them. I generally eat them out of hand and leave the rest for the squirrels and cardinals, but it bugs me to leave all that beautiful fruit. Does anyone have any knowledge of how to preserve them beyond the obvious?(Canning, drying, freezing.) Any ideas or recipes would be appreciated. 

  Kevin Z9





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