Strange fruits on an autumn walk

by Laura Gray on November 21, 2009

Persimmon - Diospyros kaki, caco
Strawberry tree, Arbutus unedo,  corbezzolo (albatro in Montalcino)


Today there was a wild boar hunt nearby and the valley echoed with the huntsmen’s yelling and their dogs barking. 

The vines are now straggly and sad, with an odd leaf here and there. In contrast, the chestnut trees  in the woods are explosions of colour, each tree like a huge flame and the macchia (the Mediterranean bush that is all around Montalcino) is dotted with the red berries of the corbezzolo. My experience of corbezzoli is that they are tremendously disappointing. They look so much more beautiful than they taste.  If you are foolish enough to eat one you find yourself picking the seeds out of your teeth for months afterwards. Of course the children couldn’t resist. Right now Montalcino is full of persimmons. These trees are truly amazing, hung with bright orange globes and no leaves. They look like early Christmas decorations.  We will be harvesting ours soon and I will be sorry to see the trees bare. Keep until slushy inside and eat with a spoon.

If you like the photographs, I have just posted the full set on our Facebook group, Il Palazzone…

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