Prunus  spp. Peach, plum, cherry, apricot - Rosaceae

Many Buddhist rosaries consist of peach, plum, apricot or cherry stones.  Often they are lacquered or painted.  Many are carved with religious symbols.  Tribes of the Himalayan hills prepare rosaries and necklaces with the stones of the wild Himalayan cherry, Prunus cerasoides.1  Hindu women greatly value necklaces made with the scented kernels of Prunus mahaleb, a West Asiatic tree.2

Pre-Columbian caches of seeds of chickasaw plum, Prunus chicasa, have been found in caves in the Ozark mountains with their ends ground off.  It is conjectured that they had been prepared for stringing by early Native Americans.3

All belong to the more than 400 species of Prunus found mostly in temperate climates of the Northern Hemisphere.

 

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