Summer is fading… there are still many flowering trees around the estate though: The snowy blooms of the many Chilean myrtles. Once it was named Myrtus apiculata as it is closely related to the myrtles (Myrtaceae). Originally it came from Chile – where it is called arrayán and palo colorado. Botanist and plant hunter William Lobb sent seeds to England and so introduced the lovely plant with the cinnamon colored trunk to cultivation in Europe around 1844.
The Hutchins family brought it to our area around 1880. It grows like weed – it IS a weed in der area around Glengarriff and is even hated by gardeners of many a famous garden. The black berries are edible and are either prepared as a kind of chutney or as a liquor. They are also used for their medicinal properties.