Last Saturday there some shrubs along the trail with pairs of red berries; Utah Honeysuckle. Then today as I was enjoying some Serviceberries (my favorite wild fruit) I noticed the seed head of a Goat’s Beard, and I realized that it is already getting into the mature time of the season.
Those will be mostly gone tomorrow. I love serviceberries. Never tried them in a pie though, but I don’t know why not except maybe because they have a lot of little seeds and a very light flavor. I’ve eaten several pounds of them already.
I’ve heard bears are fond of blueberries, so I suspect they’d like those serviceberries, too. The goat’s beard is beautiful – it reminds me of the fireworks we’ve just seen! It’s hard to imagine you’re talking about the season maturing already, but we are heading toward mid-July. Here, the strawberries and blackberries are done, the figs are just in and the tomatoes. It’s the best time of the year for eating, that’s for sure.
Serviceberries are a staple for the bears while they last, along with huckleberries and chokecherries. The bears will start gaining weight now that the berries are starting to ripen.
The wild plants are maturing quickly now, but our garden has just begun. Mother Nature knows a lot more about planting than we do!
That photo of the Saskatoon berries could have been taken in my backyard. I didn’t know they were called service berries too. We used to eat tons of Saskatoon berries when we were kids living in northern BC.
I have lots of them in my back yard too. Here they are known only as “Serviceberries”; you would get a very strange look if you called them Saskatoons. This year is a wonderful year for them. The bushes are loaded and the berries are huge and juicy. We have tons of very happy bears around here!
These would not be very much like a blueberry. They are full of small seeds and have a very light flavor. I love them though.
We do have a wild berry, the huckleberry, that is a close relative of the blueberry and would probably be close to your Swedish blueberries.
Superb photos, as always! I’ve never seen serviceberries, so that is very interesting. Can’t quite believe that the ‘season of mists and mellow fruitfulness’ is already beginning! We’re getting some heat over here at the moment – temperatures reaching 29C in the south, and not far off here in Scotland.
We hit just a little over that here today and tomorrow’s forecast is for 35C.
It seems like many of the berries are ripening several weeks earlier than normal. I brought back some beautiful, large, ripe huckleberries which are usually ready in late July and August. The good news is though that the berries are much larger and juicier than usual.
I’m not familiar with service berries, they look like blueberries but I see where you said they don’t taste like them. Our blueberries bushes are full right now and I’m picking lots of them. We have them under cover to keep the critters out. The raspberries are starting to fruit but will take a little longer. I suspect they are what enticed the bear into our yard last year. This year the turkeys are after them. You mentioned huckleberries and choke cherries — yum! I haven’t seen any of those in a long, long time. My grandma and mom made huckleberry pie and choke cherry jelly when I was a kid. Sure do miss those!
Service berries grow on bushes or small trees up to 15 feet tall and the berries will load the branches. They were a food staple for the original Indians in areas where they grow, eaten fresh or dried. When I was a young man they were lunch for me many days when I was out in the woods.
Huckleberries are still treasured here for pies, ice cream, candy, syrup, etc. I like them but prefer chokecherries for the jelly and syrup we can make. We still have a dozen jars of jelly left from last year and some juice in the freezer as well. The chokecherry crop looks like it will be sparse this summer, but I’ll find some somewhere to make a couple of gallons of juice.
Please say it isn’t so … where has the summer gone? Actually, summer just got here .. Spring was almost a month late. I still see flower blooms on the wild raspberries, so I think our harvest time is a few weeks off.
It’s a shock this year. I was just really enjoying Spring when Summer came crashing down. If I could change anything about this area it would be to take two months out of the middle of winter and put one into Spring and the other into Summer.
Harvest time in the mountains. Our berry and corn season is in full swing. Starwberries down, reaspberries and blackberries in season. Sweet corn becoming abundant in roadside markets. Hope your season is bountiful. Sure looks like it. 🙂
I think your area is much ahead of here even, Scott. Our corn will be a month away (at least). Raspberries haven’t even bloomed yet. It does look like the berry crop will be excellent though with the exception of chokecherries and they may have been affected by a late frost.
Yes, serviceberries have a lot of fruit here and they are just now starting to reach their prime. I will try to dry some this year for use in trail mix. I know the Indians used to dry them like raisins. (I really need to get to know some of the reservation folks better and learn how they do it!)
I hope you find some there. I know you’ll like them. Some folks don’t care for them because they have a lot of small seeds in them but that doesn’t bother me. I’ve found that the real trick to enjoying them is to put a whole large hand full in your mouth at once. That way you get a full flavor and lots of juice. Their flavor is very light, not strong at all, which is why they are seldom used for jelly or syrup. Strange too, that they appear almost identical to the berries on Black Hawthorn which have no taste at all.
I never can praise enough Your photos. Among these photos there was one which stopped. I had to stare it for a long time due to its artistic look: “Tragopogon dubius” . What an art Mother Nature can create!