Damson Blossom Profusion


Here in Shropshire we are just this minute bursting with damson blossom. We also have our own variety – the Shropshire Prune, which has been around from at least Tudor times. The damson trees along the field boundaries and lining the country lanes are also reminders, or so local legend has it, that before chemical dyes were invented, damson growing was done on an industrial scale both here and in many parts of rural England, the fruit skins used to colour wool and leather. I’ve certainly seen old photos on a pub wall in nearby ‘Damson Valley’ of the fruit being harvested by the cartload and driven off to the local station. And whether for dyeing or not, there was certainly once a great demand for damsons in the commercial jam-making industry. These days people aren’t so keen on them, and each year the old tree at the allotment hangs in unpicked fruit. It is seems a great pity. Damsons are delicious, and they also make for excellent damson gin or vodka, so spreading their cheer through the darkest months. Chin-chin!

Spiky Squares #26

33 thoughts on “Damson Blossom Profusion

    1. Yes a type of plum but around half size and deep purple-blue-black. The trees do indeed make sturdy as well as beautiful hedges. We also have black thorn (also flowering wonderfully now) which is the wild version, producing berry sized fruit.

  1. what a beauty . . . wonderful. Must admit though I am not a damson fan! The jam is sort of ok, but the fruit is not for me. My MrB and my Mum think I am bonkers as they both love them!!

      1. Hmmmm…….. I’ve yet to be convinced by Gooseberry Fool and Summer Pudding so suspect I may think the same of Damson Ice-cream. I know I’m a funny girl!!

  2. Wonderful information, I love that sort of thing Tish, I like to see those old photos that tell us a lot about the rural areas and how people used to live and what they would have harvested. I love Damson and made jam of it once only, it was delicious, I don’t know why but maybe I used a lot of sugar 🙂
    Lovely photos too.

  3. Can there be a much more joyous sight than fruit blossom? Damsons seem to be having a bit of a revival here; I’ve seen damson jam for sale at a couple of markets recently having virtually forgotten about them since I was a kid. I do like the idea of damson gin; T and I have been thinking about getting a still (legal here) since a friend mentioned having had some fab home-made stuff.

      1. And your problem with that …? 😂😂
        Think of it as allotment to glass living. With all the lovely botanicals you could grow.

  4. My Santa Rosa Plum has been in full bloom since last Friday. We had a bit of rain last night so it is not as spectacular as it was over the weekend. Still beautiful though and we should have a bumper crop this year. Waiting now for the apple blossoms.
    Your photos are spectacular, as always.
    Gracias, Tish.

  5. This is a beauty and a tasty jam here – did not know about the use of colouring or the vodka though. Great info and beautiful shot.

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