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18
votes
1answer
392 views

Mushrooms in a Vineyard

The bracha on a mushroom is "shehakol" because the Talmud (Berachot 40b) correctly (I think) states that mushrooms do not derive their nutrients from the ground. If a mushroom is growing in a ...
4
votes
2answers
120 views

Cutting down fruit tree not worth its upkeep

There's a general prohibition to cut down fruit trees (see this question), based on 'bal tashchis'. Would the prohibition apply even to fruit trees that are expensive to maintain (and do not produce ...
3
votes
2answers
68 views

Peah on a circular field

If a farmer's field was perfectly circular and had no corners, how would peah be designated? Would it be exempt from peah? Would he designate the outer ring as peah?
6
votes
1answer
134 views

What bracha would the fruit of a parasitic plant be? (Or the plant itself.)

Parasitic plants do not grow in the ground, instead they grow on other plants. See: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Parasitic_plant List of examples: http://www.parasiticplants.siu.edu/ParasiteFood.html ...
10
votes
3answers
592 views

Halachic status of kamut

Khorasan wheat, often known by one popular brand name thereof, KAMUT®, is an ancient grain that is related to modern-day wheat, but has a number of differences. Does it have the halachic status of ...
0
votes
1answer
153 views

What conditions would render plants non-kosher?

Under certain conditions, I know that uncontaminated (e.g. no insects / meat, etc) plant-based foods are prohibited (ie., non-kosher). Examples I can think of include: Non-kosher wine Chometz ...
0
votes
0answers
100 views

Pesach: Kitniyos Plants

Vegans have a hard time getting enough protein on Pesach. Is the plant that grows from a kitniyos seed also kitniyos on Pesach? What if the seed is still attached?
1
vote
2answers
84 views

What is “קוצר לשחת”?

The mishna, M'nachos 71 amud 1, says: קוצר לשחת ומאכיל לבהמה That is, under the circumstances described there (not important for this question), one is allowed to cut his grain לשחת and feed the ...
7
votes
1answer
219 views

Plants before the Sun in the Order of Creation

Why does plant life precede the Sun in the order of creation given that plants need the Sun to do photosynthesis?
11
votes
1answer
309 views

Are plants that exhibit rapid plant movement considered non-Kosher animals?

There is a question here asking if sea sponges are Kosher. The answers seem to center around the idea that regardless of if they have animal cells, a halachic classification might depend on how it ...
3
votes
2answers
165 views

Plants growing out of the Kotel

Is there a special status awarded to the plants (shrubs?) growing out of the Kotel? Why don't they get rid of them, as their roots obviously have deleterious effects on the wall?
2
votes
0answers
27 views

Re-planting on Shabbath

If a plant was uprooted, is it considered a Melachah of planting to re-soil it on Shabbath? The simplest example would probably be that a child pulled a plant out of its pot on, or immediately ...
16
votes
6answers
507 views

G'dolim or Rabbis Owning Pets

Are there any g'dolim (or rabbis of major influence) - past or present - who are known to have owned pets/kept animals for non-agricultural purposes?
1
vote
0answers
467 views

What happened to Canaan during the famine after Yaakov et al went down to Egypt?

During the famine Yosef collected all the money in both Egypt and Canaan. In the following year Yosef acquired ownership of all the land in Egypt (except the priests') for Paro, but it says nothing ...
4
votes
1answer
125 views

Feeding a dependent plant on shabbos

Suppose someone keeps a plant that must be watered daily in order for it to survive. May that person water the plant on Shabbat? Note that this is definitely allowed and even required for pet animals ...
4
votes
2answers
150 views

Why did Noach plant a vineyard?

The first mention the torah makes of wine and vineyards is in Gen 9:20-21, when Noach plants a vineyard and then gets drunk on wine after the flood. What prompted him to plant a vineyard as, ...
6
votes
1answer
195 views

May one “use the facilities” outdoors on shabbat?

May one urinate on the lawn on shabbat, or is that forbidden the same way that watering it is forbidden? What about defecation? Feces may or may not contain nutrients that are beneficial to the soil ...
6
votes
1answer
159 views

When is one allowed to eat a fruit from Eretz Yisroel without giving trumah?

When is one allowed to eat a fruit from Eretz Yisroel without giving trumah? When I was in Israel we picked pomegranates directly off the trees and eat them. I was told this was okay because it had ...
7
votes
3answers
129 views

Why do we put out greenery on Shavuos?

Those that have the Minhag to put out greenery in the Shul on Shavuos, why do we do it?
7
votes
2answers
215 views

Does kashrut depend on peah, leket, etc?

I understand that if a crop in the Land of Israel does not have the trumot and maaserot properly separated, then the produce is tevel and cannot be eaten (until it is done). But that made me think of ...
6
votes
2answers
101 views

How long does soil need to last?

If you move a tree with its soil, it's considered replanted (so the rules of orla kick in) unless it can live off of the soil you're moving it with. (Source.) Clearly "if it can live" doesn't mean "if ...
6
votes
3answers
277 views

Orla: are the leaves of the plant included in the prohibition?

I have recently planted a grape vine. The nursery insists that it is at least 1 year old (and the size of the plant suggests no less than 2 years old). It was planted with it's roots entirely ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

What would be an example of permitted vs prohibited cross-grafting with fruit trees?

I haven't studied Tractate Kilayim. I know you can't plant grapes with wheat. What about, say: Jazz apple = Royal Gala apple X Braeburn apple ? Nectarine = Peach X Plum ? Nectaplum = Nectarine X ...
5
votes
1answer
64 views

Obtaining the 7 Species in the U.S

Often on T"u BiSh'vat people like to eat members of the shiv'as haminim - the Seven Species by which the Land of Israel is praised. Some of them, such as grapes and dates, are easy enough to come ...
10
votes
2answers
475 views

Where are the magic cucumbers discussed in the Talmud?

Where are the magic cucumbers discussed in the Gemara by a Rabbi proud of his knowledge? Are magic cucumbers discussed elsewhere? Thanks.
6
votes
1answer
59 views

Why can't a minor's rights to eat while harvesting crops be waived?

The Torah grants workers who are harvesting a field to consume some of it while on the job. The Mishna in Bava Metzia (7:6) points out that a worker can waive his Biblically-granted rights, and make ...
8
votes
1answer
118 views

Hadas at weddings and Brit Milah

Why do Sefardim place Hadas by the Huppah and Kise Eliyahu by weddings and brit milah respectively?
3
votes
1answer
79 views

What species of esrog do people use?

I know Lubavitchers are makpid to use only Esrogim from Genoa (if not grown there, at least that species). What do other communities use? Does anyone still use Korfu?
8
votes
1answer
246 views

Which modern-day fruits require Shehechiyanu?

According to my understanding (and please, correct me if I'm wrong), the Bracha of Shehechiyanu (שהחינו) on fruits [and some vegetables?] is recited the first time one partakes of a particular ...
5
votes
1answer
95 views

Are there any halachic issues with cut flowers grown in Israel?

Produce grown in Israel is subject to many additional agricultural laws (shemita, terumah, maaser, etc.). Thus occasionally there are alerts about bell peppers, etc. for sale in American supermarkets ...
4
votes
3answers
132 views

Green pretty shavuot?

Why is there a custom to hang up flowers and growing green things on shavuot?
4
votes
1answer
75 views

What is the earliest source mentioning that Jews put out greenery on Shavuos?

What is the earliest source mentioning the Minhag that Jews put out greenery on Shavuos?
4
votes
2answers
235 views

May one put cut flowers in a vase of water on Chol HaMoed?

I know certain agricultural activities are prohibited on Chol HaMoed -- it's not the recommended time to do gardening or lawn-mowing (if there's sudden pressing need, talk with your rabbi). What about ...
5
votes
1answer
152 views
3
votes
1answer
47 views

Giving ma'aser to a kohen

When one separates the "first tithe", which needs to be given to a ben Levi, may he give it to a kohen instead on the grounds that he is of Levi lineage? Would this at least work b'di'avad to relieve ...