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November 9, 2012
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Glowing Hedge-Ball / Osage-Orange by Windthin Glowing Hedge-Ball / Osage-Orange by Windthin
This fruit goes by many names: osage-orange, hedge-apple, hedge ball, horse-apple, and bodock are just a few. It's not edible (well, the seeds apparently are), but was once though to repel spiders and insects, placed under the bed for that purpose. Turns out it actually does repel some kinds of insects.

These have a special history around here. The plant they grow on forms thick hedges with pretty nasty thorns. Because of that, Jacob Haish tried using them to contain livestock before moving on to inventing barbed wire. Actually, he's one of two men who simultaneously invented modern barbed wire, both in the same city, DeKalb, Illinois, hence the rise of the Barbed Wire Barons, three men who made their fortunes on it. The third is Ellwood, who helped the other, Joseph Glidden, manufacture his.

Osage-oranges remain the area, though, thanks to Haish's experiments. They really are creepy looking, and in our current LARP my character, the Barbed Baron, has strong ties to them; he is the forgotten son of Jacob Haish. I obtained this one as a prop, to use as a goblin fruit version for our Changeling: The Lost chronicle. I sprayed it with several layers of phosphorescent paint and acrylic sealant. You cannot see it too well here, sadly; even with my camera's aperture opened up and the shutter speed set as slow as it will go, I couldn't get a very good picture. I hope to get a black light to try again, as phosphorescence tends to react to it.
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