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« Planting By The Signs For April 2010 | Main | Bloodroot Flowers »

April 07, 2010

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We have sarvis trees here in W KY too. My dad grew up in the mountains and taught my mom to make sarvis jelly. We made sarvis jelly when we could gather enough berries. The jelly was a beautiful pink color and tasted similar to apple jelly but more tart.


Moj-thank you for the comment! I have never heard that before-hopefully one of the Blind Pig readers will know about it!


Blind Pig The Acorn
Celebrating and Preserving the
Culture of Appalachia
www.blindpigandtheacorn.com

Today my mother, formerly of Perry County, KY, talked about how they would use the wood from the sarvis tree when cooking possum. She claimed it would minimize the harsh game flavor.

Ever heard of this before?

My mom lived to be 92 and passed away 2 years ago. When I married and moved, we had a tree to bloom very early in the Spring. I asked Mom what kind of tree it was and she said "Sarvis". Her explanation of the name for the tree was that most folks waited until Spring (when the circuit preacher came around) to get married and since this was the only flower available, the women gathered the blooms for the "sarvis" to decorate for the wedding.


Katie-no they are different trees-but both grow throughout the area of Appalachia.


Blind Pig The Acorn

Music, Giveaways, Mountain Folk

All at www.blindpigandtheacorn.com

Is the sarvis tree another name for the persimmon tree?

"Sarvis" or Serviceberry trees are common here in NC. I've read that the name came from the fact that when the "Sarvis" trees were blooming people in mountain areas could expect the circuit preachers to be making their rounds again for services and for funerals once the ground had thawed enough for burying.

I haven't seen any, but you can bet I'll be on the lookout for them.

We do have sarvis trees here, but I never knew that's what they are called. My favorite spring-flowering tree is the redbud. Do you have them in your area? I spent the weekend in Bullitt Co. KY and the redbuds were ablaze all up and down the slopes, just beautiful! Ours are still in bud, so this year I will get to enjoy the spectacle twice! Thanks for another wonderful learning/sharing experience, Tipper!

Tipper: I never saw them and they are not in the memory bank.

Pacific Service Berry or Amelanchier alnifolia is one of our favorite shrubs or trees at our place. We find it all over the farm and it certainly does brighten heavy rainy brains.

I don't know if we have this tree in our area or not, we may have it, but I just didn't know it was called that. It has beautiful blossoms.

To be honest, there are so many trees blooming in the spring that I don't know the names of half of them! The Sarvis Tree is definitely one that I'll look for now.

There are tall, white-blossomed covered trees across the street from us. The house in in the gully, so it is hard to judge the height but TALL. They have the shape of something like a Dr. Suess Pear -- rounder at the bottom but stretched tall and thin the higher you go.

Could that be one?

I know we have service berry here, but not sure I could point one out! I might have to see if I can get a bundle of them from the conservation dept. to plant.

Tipper, I am embarrassed to admit that I've never heard of this tree. I'm a mountain girl....I should have heard of it.
I have seen the tree with white blooms every spring but never knew a name. I even looked at one yeaterday and thought it lovely.
I bet I'll remember the name now!

Yes we havae service berries and dthey are blooming, I never knew they had another name. Thanks for the information on them!

Happy spring!

no sarvis trees here in florida. I don't remember seeing them when i lived in KY but I think they were there. i do remember the mountains were alive with trees blooming this time of the year, i just did not know what they were. thanks for sharing

Our Sarvis trees are about "bloomed out" green leaves taking over and hiding the blooms...since temperatures have been nearly 80's and Easter service (sarvis) has passed!...I love the Sarvis (Service berry tree) a true sign of Spring...and the fact that it blooms in accordance with the varying dates of Easter.....
I can always write that down....as Easter service is within a week when the Sarvis blooms....at least it's true on my south facing hill....

Since I am from the mountains also, I definitely know about Sarvis trees.... You can drive in the Smokies or the mountains in Spring and see them blooming all over the place.... Oh--how I love spring.
Hugs,
Betsy

I like all the explanations!

We have quite a few sarvis trees on the mountain side in full bloom just now -- so beautiful!

I've never even heard of a Sarvis tree! But then I come from the deserts of Utah--a completely different world isn't it?!

Shirley-it does bear fruit-small berries similar to blueberries. Most folks (including me) never get to eat the fruit cause the birds get to them first. Since the trees grow tall and skinny-its hard for most folks to gather the fruit.


Blind Pig The Acorn

Music, Giveaways, Mountain Folk

All at www.blindpigandtheacorn.com

Julie-Sorry you couldn't see the whole tree in the photos. Sarvis trees are tall and skinny-at least thats how I describe them. They may grow to be 30 to 40 feet tall but their girth doesn't get very big.


Blind Pig The Acorn

Music, Giveaways, Mountain Folk

All at www.blindpigandtheacorn.com

Can't say that we do. I certainly haven't heard of them, but I can't tell from the pictures if I've ever seen one.

I'm not familiar with this tree. Does it bear fruit of any kind?

I have never heard of Sarvis trees before. I love the stories and like you my favorite is the last. Thanks for sharing.

Cool theories as to the name! I've never heard of them!

Cute pic of you when you were little!

Tipper,
I always enjoy seeing the sarvis tree blooming each spring. This sure brings back many mountain memories of growing up in this area. Your blog is always so interesting. I noticed my friend, and used to be neighbor, Eva Nell Mull Wyke,commented on your blog.

I probably have come across this tree but really didn't know what it was called ... thanks for the info.

Yes indeed! I have a mighty tall Sarvis tree blooming right a long side a beautiful redbud! Back in the Cove, we have a Savis which has bloomed for many a year! My daddy's story about the Savis was connected to the burial of folks who had passed away during the winter. The ground was too froze to dig a grave. When the Savis tree bloomed the folks knew the earth was warm enough to dig the grave and have the Savis (funeral)!

I like your explaination of the 'women folks' who declared the blossoms as being fine for carrying to church - for the Savis! Beautiful!

Eva Nell

This is real good, honey! Thanks for this blog. Don't get to it as much as I'd like to. Things are slow on Facebook right now, but when they ramp back up, I'm going to suggest this to people interested in App. It's the BEST!

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