Saturday, 1 March 2014

March plant of the month

Cornus mas (Cornelian cherry)
Family: Cornaceae   Origin: Central & Southern Europe   Accession: 1975

find it north of Loch Macar
Cornus mas is a hardy deciduous shrub up to 4m in height and spread, with oval leaves turning purple in autumn. Small clusters of tiny flowers each with 4 bright yellow petals open in late winter before the leaves appear, to be followed by glossy red, cherry-like fruits. The fruit is edible, it has an acidic flavour and is mainly used for making jam. In Azerbaijan and Armenia, the fruit is used for distilling vodka. It is often used as a medicine in Eastern Europe, being high in Vitamin C. The wood of C. mas is extremely dense and has traditionally been used for making weapons and tool handles

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