How to grow the mountain ash in a biological way
The organic cultivation of the domestic rowan (Sorbus domestica L.) is very easy as it is a very rustic plant that needs little government.
In Italy it is a plant that is found sporadically throughout the peninsula and in the islands, in the broad-leaved mountain forests and grows preferentially on calcareous substrates.
Unfortunately this plant is in constant decline and belongs to the ancient fruits almost forgotten. These fruits, in fact, were much more widespread in past centuries and many people completely ignore the existence of this fruit.
The plant of the rowan flowers in late spring (around May), from its cluster inflorescences are formed of small fruits (sorbe) in the form of pomes of 2-3 cm in diameter, green in color and then reddish-yellow when they are ready for the harvest.
For its cultivation it is necessary to find a very sunny position and on drained and preferably calcareous soils. It is such a rustic plant that it does not require any type of fertilization and is practically scarcely subject to parasitic attacks.
The rowan harvesting takes place between September and October, when these are of a yellow-red color. In ancient times they collected from the ground after the spontaneous fall.
Remember, however, that at the time of harvest the berries are not edible because they are not yet fully ripe. The maturation and therefore the possible use is subsequent to the collection; you leave the fruit, for a few days, in the kitchen or in the cellar. To regulate for the moment of consumption you have to wait until the peel has assumed a characteristic brown color and the pulp becomes sweet and soft.
Among the properties of the rowan, remember that these are excellent allies of the health of the intestine. With these fruits it is possible to prepare cream puffs, pastes, jams, pies, decoctions and can also be “cooked in wine” just as you do with the percoche; it is possible to prepare natural sorbets, even without sugar.
From the young wood of the ash tree a dark liquid is extracted to dye fabrics. The tannin extracted from the leaves was once used for the tanning of the hides. The wood, colored in brown red, with a lighter sapwood, is hard and elastic and is used in the construction of pieces subject to strong friction, as well as in carpentry for rural and household tools, work by lathe and carving. The Sorbo, due to its peculiar characteristics of rusticity, is suitable for organic cultivation and for the enhancement of marginal areas.
Among the pests the only concern may be that of birds that are very fond of rowan.