Monday, January 2, 2012

Where Two Blog Posts Collide ~ Part Two

Living in Virginia has had lots of advantages. The best thing is that we now live closer to family and friends we haven't seen in a while. One of them is my friend Judy. Actually she was my sister Joey's best friend for many years while we were growing up and even lived with us for several years so she's more like a sister than just a friend.
Judy lives just about an hour west of us so a couple of weekends ago we decided to take a drive over the mountains and meet her and her son John for lunch. It was great to see them again. There is nothing like family.

In any case while driving up in the mountains I noticed quite a few trees with some very strange fruit on them. From a distance they looked like grapefruit. Now, I know there are no grapefruit trees in northern VA ~ and these trees, while bare of leaves had tons of these big yellow fruits on them. We didn't have time to stop on the way there so while on the way home when we saw tons of this fruit on the ground, Richard took a detour through the neighborhood full of farms ~ most of which seem to have these trees.

We found one farm that had a tree close to the fence with lots of these fruits on the ground so Rich pulled over and I had Nate run into the yard and grab me a fruit. He did it for me but not before asking if sending the black kid out to steal the fruit was a good idea! In any case, we got the fruit to bring home. Here's a close up for you..
It is about the size of a grapefruit ~ only wrinkly and it does have a citrus smell to it. Got it home and cut it open. The inside has the consistency of a pineapple. Now it was time to do some research.
After a bit of digging it's called an osage orange (also called hedge apples). While they are not poisonous, they really aren't edible. Cows and other large animals will eat them but are also prone to choke on them when swallowed. Most of these trees are planted as wind breakers as they can grow up to 60 feet and are very thick around. They do have large thorns though so care should be given when walking around these trees.

So here's where this blog post collides with the previous post... These fruit also happen to be a natural bug repellent! And more specifically they repel camel crickets! Apparently people pay good monies for these fruits and put them in and around their house to keep out all sorts of bugs and rodents. Now I wish I had gotten a lot more of these fruits. We took the one we grabbed and put half in my sewing room and the other half in the "utility room" in the basement and voilĂ  ~ no more spider crickets! Let's hope they keep on repelling until we can get some more.


MaryAnn said...

At Halloween it also makes an awesome brain in a bowl of jello blood. Used that one year not too long ago. We had them in Oklahoma too.

Mom Taxi Julie said...

I've seen those pop up on Facebook and blog posts quite a bit lately! I had never heard of them before this year.

CritterLady said...

How bizarre! I like what MaryAnn said, because when I first saw your close up photo, my initial thought was that it looked like a brain! We could sure use some of those here in my basement during the warmer months. Good to know!

DD said...

We have them here in TN too. Back when I lived in Texas we called them Horseapples. Oh lord...that sentence makes me sound so southern....
Wish I would have known about the Camel Cricket repellant qualities when I lived in Raleigh!!