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On my various walks through the countryside I have noticed most of the hedgerows have a bush with a small round blueish black Berry, I am trying to identify them and see if they are edible or not! 🤷🏼‍♀️


  • bcpathomebcpathome Buckinghamshire Posts: 695
    Could be sloes.
  • DovefromaboveDovefromabove Central Norfolk UKPosts: 80,451
    I think they look like sloes 
    “I am not lost, for I know where I am. But however, where I am may be lost.” Winnie the Pooh

  • PosyPosy Isle of Wight.Posts: 3,557
    Good for gin, not so good in crumble!
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,289
    Just be careful if you pick any, as mature blackthorn is like it 'says on the tin'.
    The thorns are pretty severe  ;)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Pete.8Pete.8 Billericay, EssexPosts: 9,354
    I remember picking them years ago to make sloe gin.
    The key was to wait until there was a good frost in October or November to soften them a bit then go out picking them.
    We don't seem to get much in the way of frost here anymore -not until about March
    Knowledge is knowing that a tomato is a fruit.
    Wisdom is not putting it in a fruit salad.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,289
    Just shows the differences in the climate @Pete.8. They [frosts] start in October here, sometimes earlier. Earlier again further north. 
    I think mine [sloes] tend to get picked around September, but I don't use them - they go to my sister, or the birds have them. I grew the hedge primarily for the birds and other wildlife. 
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • steephillsteephill Posts: 2,510
    Pick them when they are ripe and freeze them, you get much better quality fruit then. No need to wait for frosts or deal with any of the old wives tales about pricking them with silver needles etc. Advice from the gin maker Sipsmith - when making sloe gin don't add sugar at the start. Infuse the gin and berries first then add sugar syrup to your taste. You will find you need much less sugar than traditional recipes suggest.
  • FairygirlFairygirl west central ScotlandPosts: 47,289
    I freeze them for my sister @steephill. It was particularly useful last year when we couldn't travel. She got them a couple of months ago. 
    I must tell her about the advice re the sugar. Thanks for that.  :)
    It's a place where beautiful isn't enough of a word....

  • Thankyou very much for all your replies! Very helpful. 😊
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