Photographer's Note

In Ukraine it is commonly believed that if there are a lot of berries on rowan-trees a harsh winter will be. Be ready!

Rowan (or sorb, in the picture the European Rowan is shown) is called 'gorobina' in Ukrainian, 'ryabina' in Russian, 'üvez' or 'ağacı' in Turkish, 'sorbo selvatico' in Italian, 'Eberesche' in German, 'sorbier' in French (or Sorbier de l'Oiseleur, which means Bird-catcher's Sorb, because this tree attracts birds and a bird-catcher awaiting under the tree can capture them; thanks to jafadabret for this additional information), 'serbal' in Spanish, 'sorveira' in Portuguese, 'jarzebina' in Polish (thanks to Graal) …

Some useful information from Wikipedia:
European Rowan (Sorbus aucuparia in Latin) is a small tree typically 4-12 m tall growing in a variety of habitats throughout northern Europe and in mountains in southern Europe and southwest Asia. Its berries are a favorite food for many birds and are a traditional wild-collected food in Britain and Scandinavia. It is one of the hardiest European trees, occurring to 71° north in Vardø in Arctic Norway, and has also become widely naturalized in northern North America.
The berries of European Rowan can be made into a slightly bitter jelly which in Britain is traditionally eaten as an accompaniment to game, and into jams and other preserves, on their own, or with other fruits. The berries can also be a substitute for coffee beans, and have many uses in alcoholic beverages: to flavor liqueurs and cordials, to produce country wine, and to flavor ale.
Rowan cultivars with superior fruit for human food use are available but not common; mostly the fruits are gathered from wild trees growing on public lands.
Rowan berries contain sorbic acid, an acid that takes its name from the Latin name of the genus Sorbus. Raw berries also contain parasorbic acid (about 0.4%-0.7% in the European rowan), which causes indigestion and can lead to kidney damage, but heat treatment (cooking, heat-drying etc.) and, to a lesser extent, freezing, neutralizes it, by changing it to the benign sorbic acid. Luckily, they are also usually too astringent to be palatable when raw. Collecting them after first frost (or putting in the freezer) cuts down on the bitter taste as well.

GPS coordinates: 50.02640 Lat, 36.34472 Long, 129 m

[ ← west ] – 50°N THEME – [ east → ]

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Additional Photos by Sergiy Lushpenko (s_lush) Gold Star Critiquer/Silver Workshop Editor/Gold Note Writer [C: 1962 W: 47 N: 4467] (16602)
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