Rum Cherry - Seedling
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Prunus serotina
Rum Cherry - Seedling

Uses: Fruit, Bark
Acquired: tbd
How started: Seedling
Source: Hoyt Arboretum, Portland, OR

In Japan, the blossoms of the common flowering cherry are preserved in salt. These cured cherry blossoms are used to make tea. The rum cherry, Prunus serotina, has edible fruit, twigs and bark, according to the Plants for a Future website. I would take a guess that the petals are also edible, though I have not found any reference I can cite on this.

from LV on ForageAhead forum on yahoo groups:
I make the nicest ice cream topping with black cherries every year.
There is just nothing better than it. I tried making preserves and all
other fancy stuff, but just using it as a topping after you added some
dextrose is just amazing.

I have about five trees on my property I harvest from. In my opinion
they are roughly the same quality and I do not get fruit quality
variations as e.g. with persimmons.

Harvesting takes me and my daughter and a large tarp with a slit and
hole in the middle, so the tarp spans a large are of the bottom of the
tree with the stem through the hole. I then use a grapple and rope
throwing the grapple around a branch, then shaking the branch resulting
in a downpour of cherries. It sometimes take a gorilla ladder if things
get stuck, so I have several ropes and grapples and if one gets stuck I
move to another branch, and only use the ladder at the end to take them
all off after I collected the cherries. I then remove the tarp and pull
it to an open space, place the hole inside a 15gal drum and we lift the
tarp at four corners, with the cherries forced into the center hole
where the drum is. Takes about 1-2 hours to do all the trees but the
amount is really good and if I make sauce out of one harvest, it lasts
for more than a year!, really a good deal.

The trees give me about three harvests repeating the above.

I am going to try your pointers regarding blossoms, I can collect about
a wheelbarrow load full after the rough winds we had yesterday.

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