[NAFEX] Trees in city
wawo at yahoo.com
Mon Sep 25 15:58:35 EDT 2006
A number of years ago I was in Leipzig, Germany (in the former East Germany). Along one street some huge trees (18-24 inches in diameter) were dropping little red drupes all over the sidewalk, street, etc. Initially I didn't know what they were, but ventured a taste and they were delicious! I at last guessed they were mulberries.
Unfortunately, the trees were so tall it was impossible to pick the fruit without a tall ladder, and since the dropped fruit fell on the sidewalks and streets it got trodden under feet and wheels. I never saw anyone pick any.
Right now, however, the region is fairly prosperous, and people can buy food at the market. During the socialist regime, however, food was in shorter supply and I expect the mulberries were consumed then. There is a long tradition of urban gardens in Germany (Scheber gardens) and under the GDR those gardens were a significant source of fresh vegetables for urban dwellers.
Also, during WW II England relied heavily on rose hips as a source of Vitamin C. Urban landscapers (and suburban, too) could view fruit plantings as a sort of "insurance policy" for a source of nutrients in case shortages did arise, though of course it would be best if the fruit were continually appreciated and consumed.
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