mulberries are not the only fruit

but today they feel like it

one of the last emperors of constantinople named the south of greece 'the morea', as it looked like a mulberry leaf...fair play to him, and if i had my way we'd plant one in every square, one in every bit of public space...theres nothing like them

dippy old james I tried to kick off a boom in the silk industry in britain by planting huge numbers, but legend has it that he went for black mulberry and silk production relies on the white...still, the black tastes a whole lot better, so hats off to him too



theyre a beautiful, slightly weeping, spreading tree, somehow slightly magical - weve all sung 'mulberry' but how many of us have eaten one? they probably declined in number due to the staining fruit and the long time it takes some varieties to bear fruit...seven to eight years they say...we planted two year old trees three months ago and here they come already

traditionally the last tree in the orchard to bloom, mulberries entered our year-clock - our way off reading nature and the seasons - the elizabethan poet barnably googe wrote "when soever you see the mulberie begin to spring, you may be sure that winter is at an end"

run to historic houses and pinch them off the trees there, ask at nurseries, even your grocer, but do find them somehow...elizabeth david recommends them in summer pudding, and if theyre recommended by her then thats all fine with me

same old same old

all the signs were there....surprisingly confident, attacking performances from the unfancied hosts, the emergence of the odd new star, high scoring group games, lively crowds, the odd overthehill grandpa drinking (surely) one last time from the creative well, plenty of minnows scaring the big fish...this could be a great world cup



but sure enough the fear of defeat wins once again over the urge for adventure, it seems that winning can only be considered and achieved as a default of not losing

dull

wasting my time when theres a circus going on out there in the fields

and after all the fuss

back to the mowing, the weeding, the digging, the watering, the feeding, the sweating, the blisters, the planning, the mulching, the strimming, the rotovating, the pruning...

Go to Otter Farm | by Mark D