no sloes

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no sloes

Postby JoseyJo » Sun Nov 25, 2012 10:02 am

Usually we can find lots of sloe bushes to make our annual sloe gin, but this year we've had no luck. I think the bushes we usually go to may have been cut back (along with the blackberries as we couldn't find many of them either) but has it also been a bad year for sloes and other berries? I usually see bushes quite a bit when we're out and about, I haven't spotted any (except one annoyingly too far away over a big ditch.) Is it too late now?
We're in Cambridgeshire - so if anyone knows of any bushes.....
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Re: no sloes

Postby GeorgeSalt » Sun Nov 25, 2012 11:26 am

Sloes and most berries have had a mixed year. It's been an incredible year for hawthorn here (a wee bit north of you), an ok year for elderberries, but for sloes I had to really hunt about to get what I needed (exposed bushes didn't set fruit, and bushes with one side exposed only had fruit on the sheltered side). Blackberries were ok (but it's now about 2 months too late for those) but the quality of blackberry was very poor, I don't think the sugar content is very high this year.

It's not too late for sloes if you can find them.
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Re: no sloes

Postby JoseyJo » Sun Nov 25, 2012 3:23 pm

Ok thanks, well I'll keep hunting then! Won't make it in time for Christmas presents but maybe we'll still manage to find some.
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Re: no sloes

Postby Zech » Tue Nov 27, 2012 2:39 pm

Everything's been terrible round here. No sloes at all, no damsons, no plums and very few apples (yes I'm including garden fruit here as well). I think we had storms at the time all these were flowering, and the flowers just got blown/washed away before they could be pollinated. Then if anything did manage to set fruit - rose hips for example - the summer was so dreadful they didn't amount to much anyway.

On the other hand, my neighbour did spot some sloes near the coast and when I visited my sister in Sussex I picked some there, so there are some around, if you're lucky.
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Re: no sloes

Postby JeremyinCzechRep » Sun Jan 20, 2013 3:44 pm

Here in the Czech Republic there was a poor season for fruit generally but I did find some sloes and my sister-in-law enjoyed her Xmas present. I had a demijohn full of alcoholic sloes and tried adding more gin and sugar, hoping they would still have some flavour and colour to impart. Result? Little colour and little flavour. Not enough to bother doing it again next year. Do other people eat the alcoholic sloes? I still find them too bitter.
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