Category Archives: Fruit

Cactus pads for my last lunch in Mértola

Thanks to Matthias Brück for preparing cactus pads (nopalitos) from Opuntia ficus-indicus for lunch, a long job by hand to de-spine first, but delicious! Does the old variety developed by Luther Burbank, “Burbank’s Spineless” still exist?


Visiting McMillion’s acres!

On Sunday I finally found the opportunity to visit my friend and fellow Norwegian Seed Savers (KVANN) board member Andrew McMillion who lives on a small farm in Nes, Akershus! We were joined by Amandine from France who is doing an Msc in Agroecology in Ås (Norway). She had joined us in Trondheim and Malvik at the KVANN weekend in June!
In Andrew’s tunnel greenhouse I saw several plants I’d never seen before and Andrew’s belief in the importance of diversity in a secure food production is evident everywhere! His greenhouse reminded me n fact of Alan Kapuler (Mushroom)’s amazing kinship (biodiversity) gardens in Oregon, USA (see
It’s amazing how Andrew grows  what for many are impossible vegetables with minimal additional heat!
Outside, he is developing the ravine on the side of the property with perennial vegetables! He is also a champion of Shetland Cabbage as a future hardy vegetable in Norway and this is one of many vegetables he offers each year through Norwegian Seed Savers!!
I look forward to following Andrew’s projects over the next years!!

Forage in Malvikmarka

A productive afternoon in the woods yesterday on the Malvik side of Solemsvåttan with my Swiss helper Julia Albrecht with a good haul of bilberries and the year’s first chantarelles! Yes, I think I live in paradise :)



I neither use sugar nor do I have a freezer. My favourite way of preserving fruit is drying and the quickest way of drying fruit in an oven is by making fruit leather…simply boil the fruit to sterilise and mashing as you boil, then pour into an oven tray and dry for a few hours at about 40C!
Have just finished a batch of redcurrants (rips) and raspberries (bringebær). The raspberries were both wild red raspberries, an old Norwegian yellow (gulbringebær) and a cultivar “White Russian”

See last year’s blog on raspberry / bilberry leather here:

12th August Added pictures of leather made from cloudberries, bilberries and wild raspberries!

KVANN at Njøs

English: pictures from Norwegian Seed Savers visit to Njøs, an old fruit research station near Leikanger in Sogn! We saw Stein Harald Hjetnes’ own developed Celina pear as well as collections and trials of fruit including sea buckthorn, haskaps, minikiwi and others!

Norwegian: Tusen takk til Stein Harald Hjeltnes og Dag Røen for et spennende og lærerik besøk i praktfulle omgivelser under KVANNs årsmøtet i Leikanger i April!

Vi fikk bl.a se hans egen pære Celina som var et av grunnene til at han fikk plantearven pris for ifjor.
I tillegg til pære kunne vi se forsøk på minikiwi, honningbær/blåleddved, tindved mfl.
Noen av bildene er tatt av Kjell Hødnebø!

Papaws – Asimina triloba – in Norway?

I was asked if it is possible to grow papaws (Asimina triloba) in Norway. I don’t think it’s impossible, but I suspect they need warmer summers than most parts of Norway can offer. I have seen good size trees in Malmø (Southern Sweden) with one fruit at the end of July in Åke Truedssons garden and a good size tree in the Gøteborg Botanical, pictures in both sites are from  29th-30th July 2008. I don’t know how these trees are doing today. I’ve tried a couple of times. I’ve managed to germinate seed, but the plants hardly grow in my cold summers! See more about papaw (which is not the same as the better known tropical pawpaw or papaya) on the wiki page here:
1) In Åke Truedsson’s garden in Malmø with a fruit!

2) In the Gothenburg Botanical Garden


Apple moon weekend

At the apple moon coring and cutting apples is a must..processed a couple of hundred apples today, now drying over the wood stove and in the oven. It’s a it more urgent than normal as -8C when I finally managed to harvest them was a bit too much and they won’t be able to be stored long this year (all have brownish blotches on the outside), a bit like the supermoon picture I just took, see below ;)

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