No, you can not eat horse apples as humans. The short explanation is that horse apples, sometimes known as Osage oranges, are poisonous to humans. The hedge apple is inedible not because of its unpleasant flavor or look, but because of latex, a fruit secret that can irritate human skin. Anything that may injure the human body’s outside can also harm the inside.
The seeds can be eaten, but they must be soaked for at least 24 hours to soften. Unsoaked, it is difficult to extract part of the seeds from the pulp. The liquid contained within the fruit and stem is an irritant to the skin. They do, however, make an intriguing addition to any home’s décor.
- Are horse apples poisonous to humans?
- What do horse apples taste like?
- Do horses really eat horse apples?
- What do you do with a horse apple?
Are horse apples poisonous to humans?
The fruit horse apples are shrouded in mystery and folklore. The fact is that there is a lot more discussion about hedge apples than official research, but it is widely assumed that hedge apples, while unappealing to eat, are not toxic to humans or cattle.
Is it also true that horses can eat horse apples? Horse apples have traditionally been used to repel cockroaches and fleas. Horses do consume the fruit, which has resulted in fatalities owing to lodgement in the animal’s throat. Some people get sensitive to the milky sap found in the stems, leaves, and fruit, resulting in dermatitis.
What do horse apples taste like?
Horse apple is also known as hedge apple, bow wood, and bodark. I adore its delightfully wrinkled and bumpy look. It has the appearance of a green brain! Osage oranges are regarded as inedible because of their texture and flavor, although they are enjoyable to cultivate.
Do horses really eat horse apples?
Hedge apples have been proved in studies to be safe for horses to eat. Because of its highly hard texture and unpalatability, horses typically avoid the fruit when browsing, especially when there is alternative food available to satisfy hunger.
Osage orange or horse apple, originate from a tiny deciduous tree or a big shrub that develops to be 30-50 feet tall. The hedge apple is approximately spherical, lumpy, and 8 to 15 centimeters in diameter, with brilliant yellow-green fall color. When cut or damaged, it secretes a sticky white latex.
It is a Moraceae, a member of the Plantae kingdom’s mulberry family. You may come upon these gorgeous and appealing fruits and wonder, “Can you eat hedge apples?” Unfortunately, hedge apples are not appropriate for human eating due to their sticky latex secretions and woody pulp.
Squirrels and chipmunks, on the other hand, may consume these fruits. Cattle, for example, are likely to perish if they consume them. It can be caused by their huge size and thick skin settling in the esophagus, which will choke the animal and take its life.
What do you do with a horse apple?
You may have come upon some hedge apples and discovered that eating them is not a smart idea. As a result, what are the applications of hedge apples? Despite their unappealing character, there are a variety of different applications to consider. The trees and leaves of the hedge apple can also be beneficial.
A Good Source of Firewood
Because of its deep, strong roots and vivid orange bark, the hedge tree is not your ordinary tree. Bulldozer operators have stated that it is more difficult to knock down a hedge tree than an oak. Chainsaws have a hard time cutting through the timber. When the wood has dried out, however, it burns hotter than any other wood.
Used as Food for Squirrels and Chipmunks
Hedge apples are unappealing to people and animals because they are hefty and have a wrinkled or rough surface that turns a yellow-green hue in the fall. When sliced, the fruit secretes a sticky latex fluid that irritates the skin. It also has an orange taste, which gives the tree its name, Osage orange.
Squirrels and chipmunks are not afraid of their appearance and will tear through them to get the inside seeds. Cattle, on the other hand, are prone to choking on them.
Useful for repelling insects.
Many insects dislike the gleaming leaves, branches, and tree bark. This is also true with hedge fruit. Chemicals found in hedge apples repel spiders and other bug species.
Because of this characteristic, residents in the area where they are produced put hedge apples under their mattresses to keep spiders away. In many situations, the fruit extract is reported to repel insects as well as other chemically manufactured repellents.
Used in the manufacture of dye
When cut, Osage-orange wood has a vivid orange hue. Because of this property, a brilliant yellow dye is easily removed.
Makes Wood Products
When exposed to natural factors, the wood of the hedge tree turns brown. It may be used to make strong and long-lasting furniture, archery bows, and fence posts. Because of its rot resistance, it is ideal for fence posts.
It is also excellent for archery bow manufacturing due to its robustness, flexibility, and durability.
Utilized in Traditional Medicine
In the past, the Comanche tribe would soak the roots of the Osage tree in water and use the infusion as eye medication.
Hedge apples should not be consumed by humans. Cattle, for example, can choke on the fruits, so keep an eye out for them in your yard.
The hedge-apple hedge is easy to establish. In a stream, a hedge-apple pulp with seeds and water is dumped and covered with dirt. They eventually grow to form a fence. Hedge apples originated in the southwest of Oklahoma, Texas, and Arkansas, where the trees were used to construct a hedge or barrier by Midwest farmers.
Osage trees offer a variety of applications. When dried, they make wonderful firewood as well as vivid colors and wood items like bows and fence posts. The fruit contains compounds that repel insects and spiders while also providing food for squirrels and chipmunks.