December 3, 2023

Charlotte Foraging #3:- Bayberries (Myrica cerfera)

Gathering bayberry berries is not as easy as picking apples off of a tree. These berries really cling to their branches plus they are really tiny. Botanists refer to the bayberry berry as a “drupe” which in the botany world is a fruit in which the outer fleshy part surrounds a shell with a seed inside. Other types of drupes are peaches, plums, olives, etc. Enough of the botany talk, we were interested in experimenting with the wax properties of the drupes. So two large bayberry trees and 5+ cups of berries later we had sore hands and enough boiled …

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Charlotte Foraging #2 – American Persimmons (Diospyros virginiana)

I had a run in with an American persimmon a few years ago in late summer. Fool that I am I picked one off the tree, googled it on my iphone and discovered what it was. That’s not too foolish but the foolish part was tasting it BEFORE reading farther to find out that this fruit has to be almost mushy and pulpy before eating. Needless to say I had a huge mouthful of dry. Drinking water was not helpful, I just went “Mmmmhh” for quite awhile. Ray enjoyed himself immensely at my expense. We saw large Asian persimmons while …

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Charlotte Foraging #1 – Part 2, still Chestnuts

I was hoping to try another batch of candied chestnuts or even Marty’s soup recipe but I left my last batch of chestnuts still in their spiky covering on our patio. We went out of town for a few days and came back to chestnut husks scattered all over. I don’t know how the squirrels or chipmunks can handle the spiky stuff but I figured “more power to them” if they really want them that badly. I still have a bowlful that I hope to keep until Thanksgiving. But in the mean time here is the soup recipe Marty made. …

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Charlotte Foraging #1: Chestnuts (Castanea dentata)

I’ve written posts about my shell and sea glass collecting, which I dearly love to do. Before we left for Singapore I was known to gather morels, bitter oranges, smooth river rocks, acorns, etc. Now that we are back in Charlotte, NC, and with my foraging buddy, Marty, we have been busy gathering for the winter, like all the squirrels around town. I thought I’d post a few of our adventures along with some recipes. We are chestnut nuts, indeed. You have to be brave to gather chestnuts while still in their outer green spiky jackets. Nasty, nasty sharp – …

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Gotta tell you our news

We are moving to Singapore for two years! My daughter was offered a job over there for two years so we all decided it was an opportunity we couldn’t pass up. I’ll still be taking care of my grandsons but with Ray retired, we will take advantage of the chance to live in such an interesting and different country for awhile. There are so many places we’d like to visit in this part of the world that is too expensive to get to when coming from the US. Going to Hong Kong would be like going back to Ohio.

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