Bright yellow gorse blazing across the moorland hills is characteristic of the Dartmoor landscape. Gorse, also known as Furze in the Westcountry, has a distinctive coconut scent and spiky foliage which acts as a safe haven for nesting birds such as the Yellowhammer and Stonechat. The flowers are edible and can be used in salads, tea or to make wine, and they provide a delicious fresh floral note to our gin.
The Hawthorn is a thickset thorny tree which is commonly found along the Dartmoor lanes and surrounding fields. Infact, haw is an Old English word for hedge. It has distinctive white flowers in Spring, often referred to as may, and then abundant round red berries in Autumn which provide an important winter food for birds. These berries are often used to make jellies and add a fruity flavour to our gin.
The Rowan tree is also referred to as the Mountain Ash because it often grows at high altitude locations. It is commonly found in the wild and is a regular lone feature on a Dartmoor horizon. Its berries can be used to make jellies and have been known to be brewed into an ale. We use them in our gin to give a fruity depth in flavour.
These beautifully delicate flowers emanate a sweet fragrance that has made them popular to insects and humans alike. The Pearl Bordered Fritillary seeks out the Common Dog Violet and Heath Dog Violet as a food source. South Devon has always been associated with the growing and cultivation of violets, dating back to its peak in Victorian and Edwardian days. Dawlish was an important centre for the cultivation of violets in 1916 and a special train ran from Cornwall to London carrying flowers on their way to Covent Garden Market every day.
We sourced our Devon Violets from the Devon Violet Nursery (www.sweetviolets.co.uk) who grow many old varieties. Our violets are currently grown and tended to by a friend in one of her fields on Dartmoor.Back to main page