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Sloe berries

Hi all looking for help 
does anyone know if these are sloe berries or a type you can make gin with, we have loads local but terrified they may be poisonous many thanks 
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  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 46,111
    Last year I gave most of my sloes to my sister, and a lady who lives nearby.
    Both are still alive!  ;)
    Mine are definitely sloe as I have a blackthorn hedge.
    Your last pic certainly looks like blackthorn, but the foliage in the first two pix looks different. They might be the wild damson, or even bullace. Someone who's familiar with those will be able to tell. They are also suitable for using in gin though :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....


  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 8,505
    Sure look like it to me.
    Another name for them is blackthorn - be prepared :)
    They are everywhere in the hedgerows round here and I've never seen so many or so big
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • FireFire LondonPosts: 13,927
    Just to note, you don't make gin with them, you get regular gin and can add some sloes to for flavouring.
  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 8,505
    Fire said:
    Just to note, you don't make gin with them, you get regular gin and can add some sloes to for flavouring.
    wouldn't it be great if you could though :)
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • steephillsteephill Posts: 2,368
    One way to tell wild damsons from sloes is to eat one. Damsons lovely and sweet, sloes not so much! :s
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,331
    edited September 2018
    Yes those are sloes ... best used after a frost but you can get around that by bagging and freezing for a few days. 
    Enjoy your sloe gin  :)
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







  • Thanks guys going to pick some tomorrow and have a go at making sloe gin 
    really appriciate all ur comments xx
  • Hampshire HogHampshire Hog HampshirePosts: 330
    I've made sloe gin every year for the last forty years,
    Found if you prick the sloes a few times then freeze them, warm the gin and sugar gently in a large saucepan then add the frozen sloes, they split on contact with the warm syrup and you get much more juice from them this way.

    I always leave them for a couple of months then strain and put into stoneware jars, you can drink it just about straight away but I always find it best if left in a dark cool corner for at least two years.
    "A society grows great when old men plant trees whose shade they know they shall never sit in."
  • Thanks Hampshire hog 🤪
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 77,331
    Make lots then you can drink some this year and save some for next year ... and the year after .... and the year after that ...... either I made a great deal or I don’t drink fast enough  ;)
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh







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