When I first considered growing fruit I was intrigued by a listing for the Wonderberry. It seemed easy to grow and felt like a great first try for me. I purchased a packet from my favorite seed company (Baker Creek Heirloom Seeds) and have been astonished by the results.
True to advertising, the plant grows much like pepper plants. It has a strong, sturdy stem and requires no staking whatsoever. The berries are small – about pea size – and hang in low clusters. They are easy to pick – be prepared for stained fingers.
I planted the entire seed packet (25 seeds) that year and each seed grew a strong plant. There has been no need to reseed; the plants come back each year – some in unintended places! Clearly the squirrel and birds are enjoying the fruit.
This year I’ve been freezing some to have over winter. The chickens love them and I’ll add them to their winter suet blocks for a sweet treat. A quick rinse, dry on the seed saving screen, then flash freeze before storing in the freezer.
Here’s the funny thing…I’ve never actually tasted one. Not because they don’t look great – but the wildlife enjoys them so much it has become a summer food source for them. Unripened fruit can be poisonous, so perhaps that’s part of my hesitation too. I give one a try when I collect a batch this afternoon.