FRUITS, WILD. Alder

The fruits of this tree occur in the form of catkins. The male catkin is long and drooping; the female is a small oval ball, which, when mature, has a pimpled green surface. The year-old female catkins may often be seen on the tree —hard woody balls with gaping crevices.

Apple.

The fruit resembles the garden apple, but is smaller, dull in colour, and more or less crinkled instead of being smooth in skin.

Ash.

The fruits are called keys, which hang on the tree in the form of long thin straps of green. Many go to constitute a cluster. On inspection, it will be found that somewhere near the centre of each key is a lump, which is the seed.

Ash, Mountain (Rowan).

The clusters of coloured berries are very conspicuous, owing to their bright red colour. They are not true berries, but small fruits, with yellow seeds. The fruit reddens very early.

Beam, White.

The fruit hangs in clusters of small circular berries, scarlet in colour, with a little fringe of black, diagonally opposite to the stalk. Each berry contains a mealy pulp, and two or three small seeds.

Beech.

The fruits are long three-sided seeds, in a hard shiny coat. These are packed in a woody case, which splits into a four-lipped cup.

Belladonna.

See Nightshade (Deadly).

Birch.

The fruits are catkinlike. The male is found at the end of the previous year’s stem growth, whilst the female is slender, pointing upwards at first, and hanging down when mature.

Bittersweet.

See Nightshade (Woody).

Blackberry.

This fruit is too well known to need description, but it is useful to be able to distinguish it from dewberry, the two being much alike. A blackberry has more pimple formations on it than the dewberry, but in its case each formation is smaller than that possessed by the dewberry. Note, also, that the dewberry has a ‘bloom’ on the surface, the fruit is plentiful, and the shrub takes the form of a few trailing .stalks.

Blackthorn.

The fruits are globular in shape, about the size of a cherry, green at first and then purple with a bloom. They cluster along the stem on short stalks. Also known as the Sloe.

Bryony.

There are two kinds:

Black Bryony.

The fruits are circular with a pointed projection. They grow in clusters on the stem, and are attached by short stalks. At first the berries are green, and later red. Often there are green and red berries in the same cluster. Note that the plant twines itself around whatever it uses as a support.

Red Bryony.

This fruit is globular, red, and much like the other bryony, but, in this case, the plant attaches itself by means of tendrils to whatever supports it.

Buckthorn .

The fruits are globular in shape, and about the size of a red currant. They are green at first, and’ then purple. They cluster along the stem among the leaves.

Cherry. Bird Cherry.

The fruit is small and bluish in colour, but it does not show any purple ‘bloom’ as is the case with the sloe. The stone is large in proportion and rough. The fruit is bitter and unfit for eating.

Wild Cherry.

The fruit is globular and smooth, the taste is bitter, but it is edible.

Chestnut. Horse Chestnut.

The well-known ‘konker,’ beloved by small boys. The husk has a few short prickly points.

Sweet Chestnut.

The husk has thousands of long green prickly hairs. Note that the real chestnut seldom ripens fully in England.

Cuckoo Pint.

This is the name given to the fruit which is provided by the wild arum. The central part of the flower expands and becomes covered with small red fruits, which have one black dot on them apiece. They have no stalks.

Cypress.

In the case of the common Cypress, the fruits are almost spherical cones, about an inch in diameter, and two to five in a cluster. The outer shell of the cone seems to be made of four flaps, joined together by a small button.

Dewberry.

See Blackberry.

Dogwood.

The fruits are globular, except that they are pointed at the tip farthest from the stalk, and there is a small projecting hair at this spot. They are no bigger than a currant, hang in bunches, and are a bluish purple.

Elder.

The white flower is set in an umbrella-shaped panicle, and the small blue-black juicy berries take the place of the flowers. Each is set on a short stalk.

Elm. Common Elm—The fruits are known as samaras. These are leafy wafers, with a lump coming near the wafer stalk. They seldom ripen properly in this country.

Wych Elm.

The samaras are similar to the above, but larger, and the seed lump is more centrally placed on the wafer. They ripen in this country.

Fir, Douglas.

The cone is elongated, light brown in colour; and pendent. A soft three-pronged scale projects over each woody scale of the cone, and this serves to distinguish it from other cone-bearing trees.

Furze (Gorse).

The fruits of this prickly bush are found in seed pods of the pea-family type. They are thin, small, and brownish when ripe.

Gorse.

See Furze.

Hawthorn.

The fruits are the well-known ‘haws.’ They are crimson berries, almost spherical, with a fringe of brown where the calyx of the flower died down. Inside, there is one small hard stone. The berries hang in plentiful clusters.

Hazel.

The fruit is an edible nut, which appears in a hard shell, set snugty in a leafy cup. The nut is a drawn out sphere with a pointed end.

Holly.

Red berries enclosing four small stones, which occur in clusters on the higher parts of the branches.

Hop.

A climbing plant, which clings by means of tendrils at the ends of its stalks. The fruits consist of leafy cones. At the root of each leaflet is a small seed. The ripe cones are yellowish brown, and occur two or three together on a stalk.

Hornbeam.

The fruits are tassels of leaf-like appendages which hang down in groups. Each leaflet carries a hard seed.

Ivy.

The fruits are spherical, black and juicy. Each is supported on a stiff stalk. They occur in clusters shaped in a hemisphere. The fruit stalks all join up at the same point.

Juniper.

The fruits occur irregularly along the prickly stems. They are spherical, but possess a little dark fringe diagonally opposite the stalk. During their first year they are green, but in the autumn of the second year they turn a blue-black, with a waxy bloom.

Larch.

The fruits are cones, small and of a pleasing purple at first, and later they turn brown. They point upwards on the dangling branches.

Lime.

The fruits are very small spheres, held by stiff stalks, which are about six inches long. They occur in bunches, five or six at a time, the stalks of which reach a common point, and at that spot is found a leaf-like appendage. The fruits are straw-coloured.

Maple.-—The fruit consists of two leafy wings joined together. At the junction, and where the stalk is attached, the wings are swollen. This is where the seed is kept. Note that the maple and sycamore seeds are much alike, but the former has the two wings placed in almost a straight line; whilst the latter has them joined like a horse-shoe.

Mistletoe.

This fruit is well known. The berries are milk white, almost transparent, soft, and contain a sticky substance.

Mountain Ash.

See Ash.

Nightshade.

There are two nightshades to be noted Both. are deadly poisons.

Deadly Nightshade (Belladonna). —

The fruit-is a blue-black berry, rather smaller than a cherry. It reposes in a leafy cup possessing five sections. The berry has no stalk, but the cup is so provided. Internally, there are two compartments, and in both is a varying number of small seeds.

Woody Nightshade (Bittersweet). —

Nothing like the above. In this case, the fruits are ovoid in shape, but rather acutely pointed diagonally opposite the curved stalk. The fruits are a pleasant green at first, then they change through yellow to orange and, finally, a crimson red. They are soft and about the size of a red currant.

Oak.

Three kinds must be noted:

Common Oak.

The fruits are known as acorns. They are ovoid in shape and held in pimpled cups. Green at first, and brown later. Note that there are two varieties. In one the cup has a stalk and is known as the pedunculate oak, while in the other the cup has no stalk. It is known as the sessile oak.

Holm Oak.

In this case, the acorn is usually smaller, more pointed, and the cup encloses a larger proportion of the acorn. The cup is more pimpled.

Turkey Oak.

Like the common oak, but the cup is covered with a mass of hairy vegetation.

Pine, Scots.

The fruits of this tree are cones, which vary considerably in appearance according to their age. At first, they are purple-green and fairly soft. When a year old, they are green, hard, and the outside is ridged into diamond-shaped sections. In the third year, they become a dull brown and of a woody texture. The ridges begin to split, and at the base of each scale, so formed, is the small seed. The gaping cones which lie on the ground then result.

Plane.

The fruits are hanging balls which consist of a mass of spikes. The natural end of each spike bears a tiny seed. On ripening, the balls break up and the spikes float away into the air, carrying the seed with it. The balls are green at first, but brown later.

Poplar.

Three kinds bear catkins in this country, I.e. the aspen, the black, and the white. The Lombardy poplar produces no catkins when growing in England.

In each case the tree should be identified first by its shape and foliage.

The Aspen Poplar catkins are long and furry.

The Black Poplar catkins are without hairs.

The White Poplar catkins are only slightly furry.

Privet.

The fruit occurs in pyramidal clusters, and each is soft, juicy, and blue-black in colour. Each berry is attached by an individual stalk. Inside, the berry is found to consist of two separate compartments, each of which contains one or two seeds.

Rose.

The two main varieties are:

Field Rose.

The berries are scarlet, almost spherical, and each is on its own stalk. The berries are found in clusters, and the individual stalks join together at a common centre. There is a slight brown fringe at the tip farthest from the stalk.

Sweet Briar.

The berries are larger than the foregoing, not spherical, but obviously ovoid. They are a browner red, and the brownish fringe is usually very pronounced. The prickles on the stem are seldom large.

Rowan.

See Ash, Mountain.

Sallow.

See Willow (Goat).

Scots Pine.

See Pine, Scots.

Sloe.

See Blackthorn.

Spindle.

The fruits of this tree need not be confused with any others. At first, they are spherical, hard, and ridged. Later, they split along the ridges and appear to have four pinkish red petals enclosing an orange-coloured seed. The fruits hang in clusters, each with a separate stalk.

Spruce.

The cones of this tree follow the description given for the Scots pine, but they are long and pendulous.

Sycamore.

See the description given for the Maple.

Traveller’s Joy.

A trailing plant found entwined in the hedges, with the abundance of feathery down attached to the seed pods. Note that each ‘feather’ carries a very small seed.

Walnut.

The male occurs in the form of a catkin, and the female in the shape of the well-known walnut. The latter is covered with a hard, glossy green rind, which turns a brownish black and then becomes hard.

Wayfaring Tree.

The fruits occur in tight clusters, each spherical, but with a point or projecting tip. At first it is yellowish green, then followed by a pleasing red, and, finally, a blue-black. A single bunch of fruits may reveal all these colours at the same time.

White Beam.

See Beam, White.

Willow.

Fruits are liable to be confused with poplars; but the catkins of poplars hang down, and those of willows generally point up.

Crack Willow.

The fruits are upstanding furry catkins. Note the leaf of the tree. It is long, narrow, and slightly toothed at the edges.

Goal Willow (Sallow).

This is the palm used for Easter decorations. The fruits are catkins. The males are little balls, slightly longer than they are wide, consisting of innumerable threads provided with a yellow dot. The females are a trifle longer and more green than yellow.

Yew.

The fruits are berries, green at first and then a conspicu-

O* ous red. They occur singly along the leaf stalks and not profusely. Each berry is ovoid in shape, but at the point farthest from the stalk is an incurved depression. Within, there is one hard seed.

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