Wednesday, September 28, 2011

Rubies from my back yard

Growing up, I always wished for a house with a garden. I was born and raised in a city and lived most of my life in apartments. So when finally we managed to buy a house with a backyard just a few years ago, it was for me a childhood dream come true.
It is a very small piece of land I admit but it's mine. (Well, almost. Half of it belongs to the Bank). One of the first things my husband and I planted was a pomegranate tree along with an olive tree and a vine. The area where we live is mentioned in many biblical stories so it is very rich in relics and reminders of Jewish history. We felt here a strong connection to past generations of Jewish settlers and wanted to keep the tradition of growing olives, vines and pomegranates.
The tree in my backyard

I love my pomegranates. I am so pleased the tree is thriving in my back yard and gives fruits we eat and use. I don't need to go to the supermarket for pomegranates anymore. In addition I find this fruit to be so beautiful. The red seeds look like gems, like giant rubies. I can understand why throughout history so much symbolism and tales evolved around the pomegranate.
 Organic pomegranate juice 

In Jewish tradition for example the pomegranate is used as a metaphor for wisdom and good deeds because it is full of juicy seeds. The book of Torah is decorated with silver pomegranates. In many ancient Jewish settlements pomegranates motives were used for decoration. Even the current Israeli coin for two Shekels uses the pomegranate motif from coins used during the Roman Empire. I feel a part of very old agriculture tradition. Pomegranates are common in other cultures as well; in Greek mythology for example it symbolizes life and fertility.
A two Shekel coin from my purse

Come autumn followed by Jewish New Year and the holidays, we find ourselves gathering produce almost every day, the tree is bursting with fruit. Since our tree is organic (no pesticides or herbicides) we use the fruits mainly for juice. According to recent scientific researches, pomegranate juice is really good for you. They're full of antioxidants, anti-cancerous agents; it lowers blood pressure and cholesterol levels and can boost the immune system. It is also very tasty.

It is traditional to eat pomegranates  in Jewish New Year ceremonial dinner (you can read more about it in this post: It symbolizes hope for a year full of good deeds like the fruits' seeds. 
So later tonight we're bringing with us a bag full of pomegranates to the feast and we'll celebrate the coming of a new and hopefully good year.
Shana Tova!
Pomegranate blossom in the spring


  1. Wow, beautiful pictures and great information about one of my favorite trees.

  2. Great pictures alongside interesting info.
    Shana Tova U Metuka

  3. Thank you Yoav, Erez and Sarah for your comments. Have a great holiday and Shana-Tova.

  4. You have a wonderful blog Yael. Shana Tova to you!

  5. Thank you so much Elra. Have a very happy holiday.

  6. I also love pomegranates. They are just like red jewels. You are lucky to have your own tree. They have just come into season here. Hope you enjoyed the holidays.

  7. Hi Simcha
    Hope you had a nice time we really enjoyed our holiday. Spent most of the time with family and friends. Shana Tova to you and your family.

  8. Beautiful! Such lovely clicks Yael!

  9. Thanks Baker Street. Keep following :)