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Hedgeapples, Hedgeballs, Mock Orange, Osage Orange, and Horse Apple.

Frequently Asked Questions:

Where do hedge balls come from?
Hedge balls are the fruit of the Osage Orange Tree (
Maclura pomifera).

Are they edible?
No - but they are not poisonous.  Squirrels love to eat the seeds of the hedge ball.

What was the Osage Orange Tree used for?
In the 1800's, they were planted as a living fence - or hedge - along the boundaries of farms.  The hedges were pruned to promote bushy growth.  The criteria for a good hedge made with the Osage Orange Tree was, "Horse high, bull strong and hog tight."  By the invention of barbed wire in the 1880's, the hedge became obsolete.

Is the wood of the tree used for anything?
Yes.  It was and still is used for fence posts.  The wood is so strong and dense that it will neither rot nor succumb to the attacks of termites or to insects for decades.  The Native Americans used the strong yet limber branches for the construction of their bows.

How do I use these hedge balls?
People place them in cupboards, around basement windows, on garage floors and around the inside and outside of the house.

Do I need to place these "balls" inside a dish or something?
Some people have reported that they have never had a problem with them leaving any residue as they age and dry.  Others "play it safe" and place them in a bowl, on a piece of foil or plastic.  Some balls could possibly ooze a sticky substance.

What is the life span of these hedgeballs?
This all depends on the conditions they are placed in.  If they are kept from freezing and extreme heat, they could last 1 to two months.

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