my mulberries!

feeling like i was melting alive for the first 2/3rds of july made it hard to appreciate summer, which depresses me now that july is over and i typically wait for summer all. year. long. "98 degrees, feels like 104" is pretty awful to see in your daily forecast, or make that, weekly, as it were.

only my obsession with mulberries overrode the misery and torture of july's heatwaves. in years past, i've gotten caught up in mild fixations, but this year i went off the deep end. i won't bore (or scare) anyone with the details (well, anyone else, since one of my friends has already suffered through hours each week of me blubbing and gushing about all the minutia of my mulberry obsession), but suffice it say, heat notwithstanding, before the city really got sizzling, i headed to my local tree to pick pick and pick. 

from early june to mid-july, except the 4 days i was in ireland - a trip i nearly hesitated to take because i didn't want to miss out on mulberry season - i picked berries religiously. before work, before the farmer's market, before anything else. and the bounty was fantastic. i easily harvested 1-2 pints each morning, though i also attracted a lot of stares, inquiries, prolonged observation and/or unwanted attention from weird men (not because i'm so amazing but because weird men are everywhere). but that's just the downside of urban foraging in a place like nyc. the upside is that the city is filled with so many freaks that hopefully i was the most mundane among them. my foraging has amassed a few silly tales, but i can't be bothered to get into them.

in any case, mulberry season ended two weeks ago around mid-july. the extended heat without rain dried up the fruits of my beloved tree, and now the few remaining berries aren't sweet, and some aren't even tart. they fail to ripen and just fall off hard and crunchy and devoid of flavor. 

alas... i have to wait another year, and in the meantime, try to ration out the precious remaining 1.5 pints in my freezer.

every perfectly precious mulberry

the key to any successful harvest: a good long reach. thanks to my swiffer stick, a pasta scoop, and a salad dressing cup, my harvester is my go-go-gadjet arm.

how i miss my morning bounty...


Sara said...

Ha! Your picking stick in ingenious and hilarious at the same time. I want a photo of you using it.

steph said...

i soooo miss my mulberries. my aunt said her neighbors have a crazy prolific one in takoma park... you should go pick some next summer!!

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