One of the Trolley’d favourite times of the year comes about in mid to late autumn, the harvest of the Illawarra Plum, Podocarpus Elatus, known up north as Goongum and further south as Daalgaal. Other known names are Gidneywallum, Plum Pine & Brown Pine.
Not actually from the Illawarra region (or a plum for that matter), the pine is a gymnosperm, an ancient family of trees tracing back to long before Gondwana detached from Laurasia and the Super-continent some 200 million years ago.
Its fruit is broken up into two sections, an external seed which has a 1cm diameter and a fleshy deep purple seedless ‘modified stalk’ with a waxy coating. The fruit is plum like in taste with a subtle pine/resinous flavour.
With significantly greater cellular antioxidant activity than blueberries, and due to it’s high content of anthocyanin-rich phenolics, the fruit is believed to have many health benefits including prevention of cancer.
A food that has grown on this land for thousands of years with so many benefits, another sign for us to look to our own street-scapes for the future of agriculture. The berries we pick are from trees lining the streets, we take as much as we need and always leave enough for the birds and everyone else to enjoy. The tastiest berries are those just fallen to the ground.
Acknowledgement of Traditional Owners and Country
Trolley’d acknowledges Australia's Traditional Owners and pays respect to the past and present Elders of the nation's Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander communities. We honour and celebrate the spiritual, cultural and customary connections of Traditional Owners to country and the biodiversity that forms part of that country.