In late spring and early summer you can find Maryland’s wild mulberry trees ripening with delicious red berries. One glimpse of this tree and I become nostalgic, I used to walk a path to primary school that was filled with mulberry trees. The juicy berries stained the sidewalks like crazy.
Mulberry trees ripen over an extended period of time as opposed to having to harvest all of the fruit at once. This leads to on-going snacking. You can grab a few ripe berries and know that they’ll be a few more waiting for you the next day – that is if the birds don’t get to them first. Years ago I made a few batches of mulberry pancakes. The berries have a lovely sweet taste that's similar to blackberries. Does it make a lot of sense to eat random wild berries? Probably not, you’ll want to consult your nearest Girl Scout.
The Red or American Mulberry is native to the eastern US, my research tells me that they can be found from Massachusetts to the Gulf Coast. The White Mulberry Tree is native to Asia. During Colonial times the white trees were imported to start a silkworm industry that never fully took off. Around my neck of the woods we have a lot of red and white hybrids that can be attributed to wind cross pollination.
While many homeowners think of these trees as a nuisance, I find them completely delightful. Imagine my surprise last week when I found a hidden Mulberry Tree at a Baltimore City property I was showing some clients. Its rare to see one in such an urban locale. My pictures were taken at an agricultural property I sold last year. Maryland's wild mulberry trees are one of my favorite signs of early summer.