The sun is out, the sky is blue and look! Blossom!
#011 : Prunus cerasifera
Wild Cherry Plum
The first fruit tree blossom to spangle the hedgerows is that of the Wild Cherry Plum, an extremely common shrubby tree in East Anglia – every hedge, scrubby corner and woodland edge will have a few Cherry Plums . . . and our boundary hedge and Wild Wood are no exception. So it was a joyful sight to see the white blossom against a deep blue sky this morning.
The botanical name is Prunus cerasifera . . .
Prunus is Latin for 'plum'. Cerasum means 'cherry' and ferens means 'bearing' – Plum which bears cherries!
If you get to know your local hedgerows (and I can recommend that you do) you will get to know each Cherry Plum . . . they will all be different, or rather the fruits will all be different. The small round fruit (about 2 to 3 cm in diameter) might be yellow, greeny-yellow, pinky-yellow, pinky-red, orangey-red . . . and the flavour and texture will vary too - juicy or dry, sharp or sweet. You will find your favourites and return year after year to gather the fruits in summer.
The RHS has a useful guide to hedgerow fruit, to help you tell your Sloes from your Bullaces and Cherries from Damsoms.
Of course, the stage between pretty white blossom and ripening fruit needs some help . . . so it was lovely to see these Honey Bees enjoying the warmth of the sun and stopping for a drink on this mossy tray of stones near our greenhouse door.
Of course, you can't count your Cherry Plums before the late frosts and the 'June drop', but the bees have sown a seed of hope for a fruitful summer.