Kousa Dogwood tree

Picture About a week ago I came home from work and wife was all excited about a new tree she had found.  If you know my wife she usually could care less about anything in the garden or any kind of plant life so this was extremly unusual.  Anyways she pointed out this tree we have across from our bedroom right next to the pond and told me to look close to the top.  Sure enough it had tons of red berries that looked like cherries.  My wife and daughter had researched it during the day and told me it was called “yamaboshi” in Japanese and translates into “mountain hat”.  I looked around and found out it was a Kousa Dogwood tree.

So we popped one in as a taste test and half of the kids spit them out.  First mistake is the skin is not edible at least raw.  So second round we squeezed the fruit in which is like a mushy mango texture and it was actually really good.  Only downside there were quite a few seeds inside.  But if I had to guess it tastes like a peach and mango mixed.  But you have to get the ripe ones because if you dont they are NO good and quite astringent.  After gathering as many as we could we threw a few in the freezer and saved the rest to make jam or smoothies/drinks.  I tried to look up recipes or different ways to make these berries but there is not very much information on them.  So we made smoothies and adult beverages with them.  They turned out good and everyone was happy.
If you are looking for a low mantenance medium size tree with pretty flowers in the spring and berries in the fall this is the tree for you!  We are looking forward to next years berries so we can experiment a little further and try to make something new.

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