Hands Off

Raizy from Mattersdorf asks:: Since all greens that grow from the earth are "hefker" is it permitted to pick flowers and greens from the gardens that face the sidewalks? Firstly, not all that grows from the earth is "hefker" (ownerless). Only those items which have kedushas shvi’is fall into this category. Thus, only flowers which… Continue reading Hands Off


Menachem from Bnei Brak asks:  We follow the ruling of the Chazon Ish, z’tl, that produce grown by non-Jews on non-Jewish owned land in Eretz Yisroel does have kedushas shvi’is. How do I acquire such produce in Yerushalayim, where the prevalent custom is that non-Jewish produce has no sanctity? Let me first explain your question.… Continue reading A GUEST IN YERUSHALAYIM

Beware of Redskins

Shifra from Unsdorf asks: I have heard that white skinned potatoes are already free of sh’mittah laws, but that the red skinned variety are still problematic. Is this true? Your information is correct. The vast majority of white skinned potatoes on the market are from the eighth year crop, which are permitted even if they… Continue reading Beware of Redskins

Overhanging Branches

Yossi from Har Nof asks: I was walking home the other night when my hat was suddenly whisked off my head by an overhanging branch. I looked up and discovered that the neighbour’s flowering bush had grown into the street. Is it permitted to cut off the protruding branch? Pruning trees is forbidden during the… Continue reading Overhanging Branches

Fresh Tomato Soup

Sammy from Ramat Eshkol asks:  My wife makes a delicious soup out of fresh tomatoes. Can she prepare the soup with sh’mittah tomatoes? Can she peel the tomatoes before putting them into the soup? Tomatoes are generally eaten either raw or cooked. It is therefore permitted to cook them in a soup. However, since only… Continue reading Fresh Tomato Soup

Wine Insurance

Mendel from Givat Moshe asks:: I am having guests who, unfortunately, do not yet keep Shabbos. I am concerned that they should not cause the sh’mittah wine I intend to serve to become forbidden. Would I be permitted to boil up the wine to make it immune to prohibition through touching? It is permitted to… Continue reading Wine Insurance

Take It Easy!

Shprintzi from Geulah asks: I only buy from Eda Charedis fruit stores. I never use Otzar Beis Din produce and we keep Minhag Yerushalayim. Do I have to do bi’ur on any fruits and vegetables? The Eda Charedis do not allow any produce which (according to their opinion) has kedushas shvi’is into their fruit stores.… Continue reading Take It Easy!

Non-Bread Rolls

Shuli from Sanhedria asks: I usually prepare mezonos rolls using fresh orange juice. May I use sh’mittah orange juice for this purpose? One may only use sh’mittah produce in the usually accepted manner. It is accepted practice to squeeze oranges (and lemons) for their juice. There is therefore no problem in making orange juice from… Continue reading Non-Bread Rolls

Mysterious Tomatoes

Yerucham from Neve Ya’acov asks: A tomato plant has recently started growing out of our concrete garden path. Are these tomatoes permitted or do they fall under the category of s’fichin? At this time of year, all tomatoes grown on Jewish-owned land are forbidden because of s’fichin. Even if they grew spontaneously (for example, from… Continue reading Mysterious Tomatoes