Friday, 14 September 2012

An Unexpected Harvest

DSCF4569I was in the garden looking at the fuchsia bush. One of my daughters does not like fuchsias. She encountered the word in a passage she was reading aloud in class, and she applied the phonics rules she had been taught and ended up very embarrassed! But nonetheless, I love our plant – our friend Ellen gave it to us back in 2000 and it has flourished despite our total lack of gardening skills.

DSCF4569-001DSCF4572This summer it has looked beautiful, and I noticed it had berries. I didn’t know that fuchsias produced berries [why haven’t I seen these before?] I looked in this book for advice

alys fowler forager

Alys says that she loves eating fuchsia berries –in fact she regards them as a good snack when she is walking to the shops!

So I picked one, ate it, and thought it was quite pleasant- vaguely blackberry-like in flavour. Alys says they can be peppery, and others liken them to pomegranates.

But you don’t get many, even on a big bush like ours – Alys says they are good as a garnish, e.g. on vanilla ice cream. She also says do not pick them till the are dark and squishy. I got about 16 – so I served them in dishes of greek yogurt [with a honey heart]



LeonhartFuchsThey were very sweet and  tasty – and there’s another dozen or so berries yet to ripen. Fuchsias are named after Leonard Fuchs, the German botanist born around 500 years ago.

Fuchsia berries- a delicious fruit growing in my very own back garden – who knew!

Must take Ms Fowler’s book outside and see what else is edible out there.


  1. I would never have thought that you could eat fuchsia berries - they look the type that would be poisonous! How interesting - and good that you had expert advice there. I'm not sure I could fancy them, however...Is there anything else similarly unusual that Alys recommends?

  2. I love fuscias - my parents used to have a bush and when I was young I would "pop" the buds to make them open! I've never had much luck growing them though - maybe they are taking their revenge on me!

  3. Well I never knew that! We certainly won't be getting fat on the berries from our very small Fuchsia, but I'm going to try them. Also interesting to hear the origin of the name. Your daughter could have got over her embarrassment by saying she was attempting to read Fuchsia with authentic German pronunciation!

  4. I had no idea! We have a nice fuschia which is just about the only surviving plant from the people who lived here before us - but I will have to work hard to convince my family that the berries won't poison us, I think!

  5. I didnt know that either! You must be the only one, apart from Alys, who does.

  6. How wonderful - I will have to check out the pot on our front doorstep, although the fuchsia didn't do very well for flowers this year. Does Alys mention whether you can use them in Jam?

  7. I had booked on to a Jams and Jellies workshop this week, but got work instead. Niqi went and brought me back a fabulous jar of plum jam. But the people running the workshop are apparently bloggy people called Frugal and Forage- or some such thing. Haven't had chance to look for them in Blogosphere yet.


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