2008 Season

What other spirits do you use for bottling fruit? Exchange recipe ideas here

Moderators: SloeHoHo, Blackthorn

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Joined: 07 Oct 2008, 12:29

2008 Season

Post by lang99 » 08 Oct 2008, 15:10

Has anyone noticed a reduced crop this year, if so any ideas why?

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Joined: 08 Oct 2008, 09:52

Re: 2008 Season

Post by ROLLINGSLOE » 13 Oct 2008, 10:06

Not having actively sought sloes out before, I cant make too much of a comparison with other years. What I have noticed is that the crop and ripening time seems to fluctuate very wildly from location to location, even within the same couple of miles radius. Some bushes have no fruit on at all whereas others have lots of shrivelled fruit and yet others have large plump fruit. It all seeks ripe and soft now though or overipe and spoiled in some places!

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Joined: 19 Oct 2008, 16:47
Location: Halesowen, West Midlands

Re: 2008 Season

Post by countryboy » 20 Oct 2008, 14:33

2008, Yep it’s been a bad year for Sloes in my area, I’ve been making Sloe gin for 15 years or more and I’m lucky to have access to large areas of farmland with acres of Blackthorn, but this year I have only managed to pick about 2lb of Sloes and Its been hard work just finding a bush with some berries on it.
The blossom came out as usual and the hedgerows and coppices were covered with white Blackthorn blossom, we had a couple of light frosts but nothing that would trouble the Blackthorn, I have seen frosts in early spring before and it made little difference to the amount of berries, the only thing that I did notice was the lack of pollinating insects it seemed every time the insects did come out to do their stuff it turned cold and poured with rain, Bumble bees one of natures best pollinators suffered badly in those heavy downpours, they seem to cope with the cold but when its combined with rain it takes its toll on them, I watched them in the garden being washed to the ground by relentless the heavy downpours, unable to takeoff again they soon perished.
I can only conclude that it’s been a number of things that have made 2008 a bad year for Sloes, but I think the main reason is lack of early pollinating insects, lets hope 2009 is a better year cus I’m down to my last two bottles.

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