Saturday, 29 May 2010

Blossoming Hedgerow

The Blackthorn





Blackthorn - is technically a shrub but frequently grows to small tree height. It is native throughout Britain and is commonly planted in hedgerows and if like these left unchecked will grow prolifically


Blackthorn produces a high yield of blue-black fruits, known as sloes which can be used in jams or wine as well as flavouring gin which is very nice. The fruit is too bitter to eat on its own though, it is thought that the blackthorn is one of the parents to the domestic damson and other plums.
The flowers, bark, leaves and sloes can be used to treat a variety of ailments as they are aperients, astringent, depurative, diaphoretic, diuretic, febrifuge, laxative and stomachic. By infusing the flowers it becomes an especially usefully treatment for diarrhoea, bladder and kidney disorders and other stomach problems. The sloe berries make a very bitter tonic it helps to stimulate the metabolism, clean the blood and can be used as a laxative and a diuretic. They also help with indigestion, skin conditions such as eczema, as well as herpes, allergies, colds, catarrh, neurosis, bladder and prostate problems. The sloe berry is rich in vitamin C and can be traced to the 17th and 18th Century as a brewed sloe tonic to treat ‘fluxes in the belly’.

4 comments:

imac said...

Gin - Wiggers thats a great name for a cock-tail.

Abraham Lincoln said...

We don't have anything so spectacular.

Arija said...

It sounds like it has all the attributes of snake oil. . .
I prefer the gin version.

Tom said...

Stewart... I met Jane when I was running a local pub.. The locals used to ask for a 'Nutty-Tom' because I was asked for two Brandy and Ports...but got the bottles mixed up and give them Brandy and Sherry...

Hi Abe... When this is out the Hedgerows look very well indeed.

Arija... The Gin version is very nice... but you can do the same with any berries... Sloe Gin as a loverly blue colour to it and the bitter/sweet of the berries goes very very well with a good bottle of 'Mothers Ruin'