Imperfect Peaches

Chana from Kiryat Sefer asks: I obtained some peaches from an Otzar Beis Din distribution station. Some of the fruit was bruised. May I cut away the bruised sections or do I have to eat them? If it is permitted to remove the bruised parts, what should I do with them? May I throw away… Continue reading Imperfect Peaches

What is kedushas shvi’is?

What is kedushas shvi’is? Fruit and vegetables (and certain other produce) which grew within the halachic boundaries of Eretz Yisro’el and which belong to the seventh year have the sanctity of the seventh year – kedushas shevi’is. The connection with the seventh year is determined in the case of vegetables by the time of picking… Continue reading What is kedushas shvi’is?

Purim And Sh’mittah

Mordechai from Givat Sha’ul asks: Since Purim is approaching, I would like to know if I may send sh’mittah wine and fruit for mishloach monos. It is forbidden to repay a debt using sh’mittah produce (Tractate Avoda Zoro 62a). The Torah stipulates that sh’mittah produce is meant to be eaten—and not to be traded in.… Continue reading Purim And Sh’mittah

Esrog Jam

Leib from Har Nof asks: My wife made esrog jam out of kedushas shvi’is esrogim. Do we have to perform bi’ur on this jam and if so, when? There is a difference of opinion as to whether the esrog requires bi’ur at all. Some hold that since it remains on the tree from year to… Continue reading Esrog Jam

Lawn Care

Shimon from Arzei Habira asks: We have a large lawn in front of our apartment. The grass is already very high. Our children are unable to play on the lawn. I am also worried about snakes hiding in the grass. The top of the grass turns brown in the midday heat. May I cut the… Continue reading Lawn Care

Simply Soap

Sima from Elad asks: I recently bought a locally produced natural soap. I noticed that the ingredients include herbs and fruit extracts. These could well be from the sh’mittah year. May I use the soap? It is forbidden to convert sh’mittah produce which is fit for human or animal consumption into an inedible form. This… Continue reading Simply Soap

Post Shmitta Nurseries

Herzl from Ramat Beit Shemesh asks: After Rosh Hashonoh, I should like to restock my garden with plants and flowers. Since this will be after the end of sh’mittah, do I have to be careful where I obtain these plants? You certainly must be very careful where you obtain your plants and flowers. Even though… Continue reading Post Shmitta Nurseries

Roses Are Forever

Yechiel from Beit Shemesh asks: Our wedding anniversary is coming up and my wife loves roses. Do I have to be concerned about s’fichin when buying roses? Since roses grow on a bush which produces flowers year after year, the prohibition of s’fichin does not apply. It does not apply to perennials. This is in… Continue reading Roses Are Forever

Olive Oil Ointment

Motty from Talpiot asks: I suffer from chapped hands during the winter. I have heard that olive oil keeps hands smooth. May I use sh’mittah olive oil for this purpose? Strictly speaking, anointing one’s body is a permitted use for sh’mittah olive oil. Rashi in Tractate Succah (40a) explains that anointing is like drinking in… Continue reading Olive Oil Ointment

Late Checks

Manny from Givat Mordechai asks: I borrowed money from my not-yet-observant uncle. I gave him a cheque for repayment, which is due on Erev Rosh Hashonoh (eve of the Jewish New Year). Is there any problem if he delays cashing the cheque till after Rosh Hashonoh? Can I write a pruzbul on his behalf without… Continue reading Late Checks