Viburnum Blackhaw Tree Information is Another Unique Edible Plant. Viburnum Blackhaw (Viburnum prunifolium), another unique edible plant, is a native as an understory shrub in the Eastern and Midwestern United States. It is a deciduous shrub in USDA zones 3 to 9. In the north it is a shrub, but in the south it can be grown into a small tree. It blooms with white flowers in the spring and has pinkish to black fruit in the fall.
Viburnum can grow up to 12 – 15-foot-high and can spread 6 -12 foot. It tolerates drought, clay soil, black walnut, and air pollution. It likes moist, well drained soils of average fertility in full sun. The leaves are obovate, finely toothed, and glossy dark green (to 4″ long).
It blooms in late spring with creamy-white, flat-topped flowers. In the fall it forms pinkish to blue-black, berry-like drupes, which often persist into winter and are quite attractive to birds and wildlife. The flavor of the fruit improves in flavor and sweetness after a frost.
The plants branches grow very dense an unruly, and it benefits from an occasional pruning. Prune immediately after flowering since flower buds form in summer for the following year.
The Fruit is edible raw, made into wine, in jams, can be made into preserves. Some recipes are at the end of this article.
Viburnum can be propagated by rooted stem cuttings, seeds, or transplanting of the occasional suckers from the nearby roots at its base. I have not had the opportunity to try propagating this plant yet. I have two at the farm and will try propagating in 2016.
The astringent bark was used medicinally. *
Black haw is a shrub that is native to the woodlands of central and southern North America. People use the root bark and its extracts to make medicine. *
Black haw is used for increasing urine (as a diuretic) to relieve fluid retention; and for treating diarrhea, spasms, and asthma. It is also used as a tonic. *
Women use black haw for treating menstrual cramps and spasms of the uterus after childbirth; and for preventing miscarriage. *
It is POSSIBLY UNSAFE to use black haw if you are pregnant. It might affect the uterus. *
It’s also best to avoid using black haw if you are breast-feeding. Not enough is known about its safety. *
Aspirinallerty: Black haw contains chemicals called salicylates. There is some concern that these salicylates could trigger an allergic reaction in people with asthma or aspirinallergies. *
Kidney stones: Because black haw contains oxalic acid, it might increase stone formation in people with a history of kidney stones. *
BLACK HAW WINE
- 3 lbs ripe black haw berries
- ¾ lb black raisins or zante currants, chopped
- 2½ lbs granulated sugar
- 7 pts water
- 1 tsp acid blend
- ¾ tsp pectic enzyme
- 1 tsp yeast nutrient
- wine yeast
Bring water to boil and add sugar. Stir until sugar is completely dissolved. Meanwhile, wash fruit and chop raisins or currants. Combine in nylon straining bag, tie closed and put in primary. Mash berries with piece of hardwood. Pour boiling water over bag, cover, and set aside to cool. When primary reaches room temperature, stir in remaining ingredients except yeast. Cover and set aside 12 hours. Add activated yeast. Ferment 10 days, stirring and squeezing bag daily. Remove nylon straining bag and squeeze gently to extract flavor. Discard pulp, transfer liquid to secondary and fit airlock. If required, top up when fermentation subsides. After 30 days, rack, top up and refit airlock. Repeat racking every 30 days until wine clears and no new sediments form over 30-day period. Stabilize, sweeten as desired, wait 10-14 days, and rack into bottles. This wine should be aged 6 months before drinking.
*Note: Jack Keller has passed away and his website is no longer maintained. A link to his published book is as follows https://amzn.to/3mIQRuV)
Black Haw Jam
1 quart of black haw berries
1 cup sugar per cup of juice
½ cup water
3 oz. pectin
Wash and stem berries and place into a deep saucpan. Add water and cook till fruit pops. Crush fruit completely with a masher. Run through a food mill or strainer to remove skins and seeds. Measure juicy pulp and place in deep saucepan with sugar. Bring to a boil stirring constantly, then add 3 oz liquid pectin. Boil and stir for 1 full minute then remove from heat and skim of foam. Pour into hot, sterile jelly jars and seal.
*These statements have not been evaluated by the Food and Drug Administration. This product is not intended to diagnose, treat, cure or prevent any disease.
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