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Cloudberry is a tasty northern berry that contains a huge amount of nutrients and vitamins. In order to harvest cloudberries and get the most out of them, you need to know exactly when they are ripe.
How cloudberries grow in the forest
Cloudberry is a herb that loves wet places. Distributed in northern latitudes, tundra and forest-tundra. In the forest, this berry grows in the same area as cranberry - in swamps, near rivers. It should be humid nearby, as the plant loves this climate. In addition, the northern berry tries to grow in the shade, since the sun does not spoil the berry too much in its native land.
This is a non-single plant, it grows immediately with a carpet. Therefore, it is convenient to collect it not only by hand, but also with a combine.
When cloudberries bloom
The exact flowering time of a given plant depends on the region. In the North-West of Russia, among all berries, cloudberry begins to bloom and bear fruit very first. Flowering begins in May - June. At this time, a single flower with five leaves appears at the top of the shoot. The petals are most often white, but sometimes pink. The flowers of the plant are exclusively unisexual. Therefore, it is possible to distinguish between males and females by the presence of stamens and pistils.
When cloudberries ripen
The northern berries ripen in July. At this time, a raspberry-like fruit is formed. It is a drupe, which consists of several bones, each of which contains a rather large bone inside. Cloudberry is a close relative of raspberry, but its color is easy to mistake.
Attention! If the berry is red, then it is an unripe cloudberry.
During full maturity, when the berry contains the maximum amount of vitamins and nutrients, the northern beauty has a bright yellow color. If you collect red fruits, then they must be ripened.
What kind of cloudberries to collect
The berries are usually fully ripe 45 days after the beginning of flowering. When the berry turns yellow, it can be picked and harvested. However, it is important to consider the rate of consumption. Sometimes it is better to collect cloudberries for the house unripe so that they ripen at home. There are several ways to process and green cloudberries.
Fully ripe berries have a very delicate skin and under any pressure, even slight, they release juice. Therefore, it is unprofitable to transport in a mature state.
How to pick cloudberries correctly
At first glance, manual assembly is not difficult. But this must be done correctly in order to preserve the integrity of the collected material:
- The berry is harvested with sepals.
- Ideal with a reddish tint.
- It is necessary to put the collected in low containers so that the berry does not choke and spoil during transportation.
Hand picking has one major advantage - you can pick berries at the desired ripeness stage and size. But there is also one major drawback - a big waste of time.
How to quickly collect cloudberries
For those who do not have time to pick cloudberries by hand, using a berry harvester is perfect. Such a device will help you quickly and without damage to collect a large number of berries. At the same time, there are several types of combine, which differ in the level of mechanization and device. Harvesters for picking berries are:
- Manual, without mechanization of the process. A container with a special device that resembles a rake.
- Manual mechanisms with mechanization of the process. These are products that are held in the hand, but at the same time have a mechanism like a motor for translational movements.
- An automatic device controlled by the operator. This is a huge harvester that looks like a simple combine harvester. The only difference is in operational management. It is used for collecting cloudberries on an industrial scale.
Smaller harvesters are used for home harvesting, while larger, complex machines are used for industrial harvesting.
How to sort through cloudberries
It is not difficult to sort out the harvest, but the process itself depends directly on the ripeness of the berry. If the berry is ripe, then it is worth sorting out very carefully so that the juice does not stand out and the fruits do not flow. When sorting, you need to select all wrinkled, with black spots, painful specimens, as well as heavily damaged during transportation. After that, the berries can be processed.
Is it possible to collect unripe cloudberries
Unripe cloudberries will ripen quickly at home. At the same time, the berry will have more opportunities to remain intact. If picked too ripe, it cannot be stored for a long time, and it will be difficult to process the berry. The main thing is to be able to ripen it correctly.
How to ripen cloudberries
There are several ways to ripen cloudberries at home:
- Place in an even layer on a paper towel. It is enough to hold the berry for 2–4 days.
- Place in a cool place with sepals.
Before putting on ripening at home, it is imperative to sort out the berries, and then rinse and dry. If you collect ripe fruits, then she may simply not live up to the house. In a cool place, cloudberries become fully mature in 3 days.
What can be made from unripe cloudberries
First of all, from unripe fruits it turns out to harvest dried berries. It is simple to dry the northern royal year for the winter: it is necessary to spread it out on pallets in an even layer and put it in a well-ventilated room without access to direct sun.
An excellent option for harvesting an unripe specimen is a pickled berry:
- Go through and pour into the jar.
- Pour boiled water at room temperature.
- For three liters of water, you can add half a glass of sugar if you wish.
- Cover the jar with gauze and put in a cool place.
In this form, it can be stored from six months to two years. At the same time, the degree of maturity does not matter. Ripening of cloudberries for such harvesting is optional.
When to collect cloudberry leaves
The leaves are used to prepare various decoctions and are harvested in several ways. But before harvesting, they must be properly assembled. Leaves should be picked at the moment the bud is forming and the flowering period begins. At this moment, the leaves contain the greatest amount of nutrients.
It is optimal to collect the leaves of the lower and in the middle of the stem. It will be useful for a plant if the number of collected leaves from one bush does not exceed a third of its total volume of leaves. Otherwise, the plant will be sick and will not be able to bear fruit normally next year.
Northern berry contains a huge amount of nutrients and a whole range of vitamins. But in order for it to be useful, it is important to collect it correctly and be able to prepare it. Unripe berries are stored better, since ripe cloudberries quickly become juice and their integrity is compromised during transportation.
Ripening cloudberries at home is a process that takes a couple of days. As a result, a storehouse of vitamins can be frozen, dried, made jam or jam. If you do not want to collect fruits by hand and spend a huge amount of time, you just need to use a harvester, which you can make yourself or buy in a store. The harvest period is July, 1.5 months after flowering.