Monday, April 16, 2012

Permaculture Plants: Cornelian Cherry

Beautiful plant with edible fruit... wonderful combination!

 Common Name: Cornelian Cherry, European Cornel
Scientific Name: Cornus mas
Family: Cornaceae

Description: Cornelian Cherry is really a edible form of a Dogwood. The fruit are small, bright red (although the color can range from almost white to yellow to orange to deep violet depending on the cultivar), and taste like tart cherries/plum/cranberry when ripe, but can be astringent if picked too early. These trees produce an abundance of flowers that last for many weeks, and while they bloom early in the season, they don't seem to be bothered much by late frosts. Cornelian Cherries produce beautiful flowers, and they are a great food producing, ornamental addition to any garden or yard.
Cornus mas
History:
  • Likely native to the Black Sea region (near Turkey).
  • Ancient Greek literature states that it was used as pig food.
  • Historically used as a food source throughout its native region and as it spread through Europe.
  • Eventually fell out of favor as larger fruits became available.
  • Has been used extensively in Europe, the UK, and U.S. as an ornamental landscape plant.
Trivia:
  • Cornelian Cherry fruit are called "cherries" or "cornels"
  • Cornelian Cherry wood is so dense it will not float. This trait makes it good for tool handles.
  • Turkey is one of the few countries that cultivates Cornelian Cherries in large quantities today where it is used as a flavoring agent for many deserts
USING THIS PLANT
Primary Uses:
  • Fresh eating.
  • Cooked
  • Baked good ingredient (e.g. tarts)
Secondary Uses:
  • Dried fruit
  • Pickled fruit (kept in a brine like olives)
  • Preserves, jams, jellies
  • Juiced
  • Wine
  • Liqueuer and Cordials
  • Flavor component to cider and perry
  • Syrup
  • Seed (one single large seed per fruit) can be pressed to produce an edible oil
  • Seeds can be dried and powdered for a coffee substitute
  • Ornamental (beautiful yellow flowers in Spring)
  • Food source for wildlife in summer
  • Good early season nectar source for bees
  • Wood is dense and hard (will not float) and used for tools
  • Dye from the bark (and maybe other plant parts?)
  • Medicinal uses
Yield: 30-50 pounds (13-22 kg) 
Harvesting: Mid-Late Summer and Early Fall. Harvested when the fruits just begin to soften. They are still astringent (dry or puckering) and/or tart at this point, but this will fade when cooked or dried or even allowed to sit in a bowl for a few days. Or the fruit can be left on the tree a bit longer to ripen a bit more. Many growers will spread a sheet on the ground under the tree and give the branches a good shake; the ripe fruit will drop making harvesting much easier.
Storage: Cornelian Cherry fruit does not store well fresh.
DESIGNING WITH THIS PLANT
Chill Requirement: Likely, but no reliable data available for this.
Plant Type: Small Tree or Large Shrub
Leaf Type: Deciduous
Forest Garden Use: Canopy Layer for small Forest Gardens, Sub-Canopy (Understory) Layer, or Large Shrub Layer (will be smaller in poor or dry soils or with regular pruning)
Cultivars/Varieties: Many named and unnamed varieties available. Make sure you choose a specific food variety if your desire is to produce fruits, otherwise you will have pretty, but poor fruit producing, plants.
Pollination: Self-Pollinating/Self-Fertile, but most will fruit better with cross-pollination
Flowering: Early Spring
Life Span:
Years to Begin Bearing: 3-13 years from cuttings or grafting, up to 20 years from seed
Years of Useful Life: 150-200 (can be much less for cutting/grafted plants)
Not a great photo, but highlighting the color and shape variation of Cornelian Cherry fruit.

Leaves of Cornus mas are very similar to other Dogwoods.

PHYSICAL CHARACTERISTICS OF THIS PLANT
Size: 13-20 feet (4-6 meters) tall and wide
Roots: No reliable information
Growth Rate: Medium
Cornelian Cherry is a great early season nectar source for bees.

GROWING CONDITIONS FOR THIS PLANT
Light: Prefers full sun
Shade: Tolerates light shade, but produces more fruit in full sun
Moisture: Medium
pH: prefers fairly neutral to alkaline soil (6.1 - 8.5)
Special Considerations for Growing:  Cornelian Cherry will produce better if planted in a more sheltered location.
Propagation: Usually grafted for the fruit to produce as the parent stock. Germination of seed can take over a year at times. Can be propagated through cuttings (has a pretty high success rate) and layering (can take over 9 months) from new growth.
Maintenance: Minimal once established which can take 1-3 years.
Concerns: No significant concerns. Few pests.

9 comments:

  1. Does the cross pollinator need to be the same cornelian cherry? Can it be a different type of cherry tree, or perhaps a dogwood tree?

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  2. Only pollinated with cornus mas, maybe with cornus officinalis ;)

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  3. Excellent blog post! Love your blog. Thanks, John! :)

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  4. What is the proper root stock for grafting Cornus Mas and the best time for making cuttings from this plant?
    Great Blog

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    Replies
    1. Everything I have read and the two, growers to,whom I posed this question, Whitman Farms, OR and Raintree Nursery, WA, graft the various cultivars onto generic cornus mas stock. This would be akin to grafting apple cultivars onto malus fuca, crabapple stock ( i have done this and have been very successful )

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  5. Thanks for given information. this is very useful for me.
    Cherry fruit is good for health, it cure cancer and nerve problems.
    www.sbuyer.com

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  6. Selain itu, kelebihan lain dari obat herbal ini adalah harganya yang terjangkau karena dipengaruhi oleh bahan-bahan utama penyusun obat herbal yang mudah didapatkan. Kelebihan berikutnya adalah teknik pengemasan obat herbal yang didukung dengan peralatan dan teknologi yang canggih sehingga kemasannya menarik dan praktis untuk dibawa kemanapun. Anda dan para konsumen lainnya bisa langsung mengkonsumsi obat herbal ini karena obat herbal ini sudah dikemas sedemikian rupa untuk emmudahkan penggunaannya. Konsumen bisa langsung meminumnya tanpa perlu memprosesnya lagi. Dapatkan segera produk obat herbal untuk menyembuhkan atau mencegah kanker. Pengobatan Penyakit Kanker untuk anda yang menderita penyakit kanker dan ingin sembuh silahkan lihat penjelasan selengkapnya

    Gejalanya memang hampir sama. Pada penyakit kanker usus, darah yang berwarna merah segar yang muncul pada saat buang air besar atau yang menempel pada tinja merupakan hal yang disebabkan adanya tumor tersebut. Karena gejalanya sama dengan ambeien berdarah maka sering kali dokter menyebutkan itu penyakit ambeien atau wasir. Dan jika seseorang sudah terbiasa dengan adanya penyakit ambeien tersebut lalu terkena penyakit kanker usus, maka biasanya ia mengabaikan gejala tersebut karena gejalanya sama dengan ambeien.Cara Aman Mengobati Ambeien Pada Ibu Menyusuiuntuk solusi dari penyakit ambeien yang anda derita silahkan Cek selengkapnya

    Gejala gonore yang tampak pada perubahan fisik adalah membengkaknya lubang penis dan sehingga menjadi berwarna kemerahan. Hal yang paling mengganggu tersebut merupakan keluhan pada setiap penderita gonore. Apalagi rasa sakit dan perih yang seperti terbakar pada alat kelamin yang sering kali terjadi. Gejala gonore ini harus anda ketahui dan sadari sejak awal terjadi. Tips Cara Mengobati Kencing Nanah cara mengobati penyakit sipilis yang aman tanpa efek samping silahkan kunjungi blog kami

    Namun jika penyakit ini sudah terjadi dalam waktu yang lama dan tingkat keparahanya sudah bertambah maka cara pengobatanya pun akan berbeda-beda. Faktor penyebabnya pun turut berperan dalam menentukan pengobatan yang seharusnya diterapkan kepada penderita. Misalnya jika yang menjadi penyebab penyakit ini adalah sembelit maka cara mangobatinya adalah dengan banyak mengkonsumsi makanan berserat yang tujuanya untuk memperlancar buang air besar, dengan feses yang tidak keras akan dapat mengurangi gejala penyakit ambein. Obat ambeien herbal bagaimana mengatasi penyakit ambeien..? selengkapnya silahkan kunjungi blog kami

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  7. I use this fruit to make Cherry Vodka. Also make Sloe Vodka. Both very good!

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