Such a gloomy day it was when I woke up after a very windy and stormy night to make myself a cuppa. I like it with a splash of milk fyi. I glanced up from the boiling kettle and passed my gaze across our backyard. There was a rabbit eating grass and a magpie sitting on top of the tramp net eyeing off the rabbit. There was also a heap of our chooks congregated in one spot pecking madly and having a bit of a frenzy. Hmmm, are they tucking into mulberries all over the ground? Mulberries that are still attached to the branches that are still attached to the ACTUAL tree…but on the ground?! Our beautiful, big mulberry tree which was laden with ripening fruit…had crashed to the ground in the storm. I was devastated.
Let me tell you something about mulberry trees and me. Mulberry trees remind me of childhood. Climbing up my friend’s tree in our pink ballet leotards and pretty stockings to gobble up as many mulberries we could manage before ballet lessons started in the studio underneath her home. We’d come tumbling into the studio covered in mulberry stains and full bellies with big purple smiles across our faces. Pure joy with a side of cheekiness!
Naturally having my own child and some prominent backyard space, I wanted to recreate those memories for my own son, as all parents love to do with their own childhoods. Minus the ballet stockings and leotard, but the tree-climbing, mulberry eating, primal adventure that comes with having a tree like this close by. I remember planting the little thing and visualising the moment my child would be up high in it’s branches eating those berries, just like I used to as a kid. What a wonderful childhood he will have! All thanks to my mulberry tree.
Do you see why I was feeling heartbroken here? In one windy night it was all gone. Childhood dreams, gone. Two years of growing wiped out in one crazy night. I guess we will get around to pulling it out and replanting another one, but I kind of feel a little discouraged by it all. Maybe I’m in mourning or something.
We did get to enjoy some of those mulberries along with the chooks on the positive side. Half the tree continues and ripening while the other half dried up and well….died.
So, if you have a thriving mulberry tree and are tempted to post pictures all over Instagram of your foraging success and mulberry loot…please spare a thought for me. It’s just too soon. Too soon.