Product: Mountain Ash Berries (Rowan)
Latin Name: Sorbus aucuparia syn. Pyrus aucuparia.
Plant Family: Rosacea
Other Names: Rowan, Eastern Mountain Ash, Wittern, Whitty, Wiggen Tree, Quickbeam, Wild Ash, Witchbane, Ran Tree, Roynetree, Sorb Apple, Thor’s Helper, Witchen & Witchwood.
Description: The mountain ash despite its name is not a true ash, it is a deciduous member of the rosacea (rose) family, native to most temperate parts of the northern hemisphere. It reaches a height of 8–20 metres; the bark of the tree is smooth and browny-grey, young twigs have a fine downy coating that fades as the twig matures. The leaves are lanceolate, 10–22 cm in length and gathered in leaflets; each leaflet is 3–7cm in length with a serrated margin. The five-petaled, creamy white flowers have a diameter of 6mm and hang in bunches known as cymes. The orangey red berries are approximately 6mm in diameter and resemble miniature apples.
Brief History: The common name of Rowan associated with the mountain ash is said to be derived from the Norse word ‘Runa’ meanings ‘a charm’. In British folklore the mountain ash has been imbued with the powers of guarding against witches and all forms of evil, thin branches from the tree have been used as diving rods and parts of the tree were used as charms to protect against rheumatism.
SUGGESTED USEThe berries can be turned into wine and rowan berry jelly has been a popular accompaniment to savoury meat dishes from centuries. Oil from the extracted from the seed of the berry is used in the cosmetics industry in anti-wrinkle formulas. In the 19th century the berries were prized as a cure for scurvy due to their high vitamin c content.
Shelf life of two years provided that goods are stored in an airtight container in ambient conditions.
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