Blueberries or Poisonous?

We can’t tell which, they certainly look edible…

Could have been slow gin made it slide.

Love the idea of slid gin Tony

Slowly sipping

Sloely slipping

He slowly slid

He lowly said

This slid gin's strong.

My fingers will tell you all about the thorns. Yes, that is about right Jane, so perhaps the jury is still out.

Bilberries grow close to the ground. Blueberries are small shrubs and sloes definitely grow into trees and have sharp thorns.

Tony's picture is a bit out of focus but I cannot see the spines blackthorns get their name from. Some of the wild blueberries I have seen have little dog's bums, in fact my own are nothing like yours, the ends are much smaller. As for sloes, well having collected four kilos of them last week, we have a boundary made up of hundreds of blackthorns, Tony's picture doesn't show the same as yours. The real test is taste them. If they are as bitter a hell with a stone in them then they are sloes, if just soft with the 'dry taste, not sweet' as described then blueberries. Actually, that should have been the test in the first place.

I'm using my sloes with gin, to make (da da dada) sloe gin (two bottles of dry gin waiting) and the rest for sloe jelly.

They look rather more like sloes than blueberry/myrtilles. The bilberry/blueberry has a distinctive "dog's bottom" at the base of the fruit.

These are sloes.

Note the slightly serrated edge of the leaf which I think I can just about make out on your original picture

These are bilberries

They don't taste much until sweetened. I make jam with honey instead of sugar. They are ridiculously healthy and I believe they contain phytochemicals that potentially reduce the risks of diseases such as inflammatory infections and cancers.

As for killing them, I suspect our male dog pee-ed against the two dead 'uns regularly.

I have an olive tree, €5 from a supermarket half dead but only about 20cm tall. It has one olive on it! They are self-pollenating so male and female trees is cr*p. E's 'avin' yer over... Apparently pruning encourages them to sprout the new growth on which you will get fruit. It works for all of my fruit trees in general, apples, peaches, cherries and plums and after cutting back our four massive fig trees we had them virtually by the ton a month ago and still some coming now. So prune and see what you get next year. My one is a bit small to prune so don't ask for a report next year ;-)

Good old myrtilles, blueberries in old money. I had two cultivated bushes die this year and would love to find some growing wild to increase my cultivars' potential. Eat and enjoy.