I’ve been working the Toronto Star for almost two years now, and I’ve finally written my first piece for them… a little essay about the joy of foraging for berries in the city.
A pint of serviceberries is however you value an hour’s work. Grasp the branch with one hand, an open plastic bag looped at the wrist. Run your thumb and forefinger down, brushing loose the fruit. Your skin will be purple for days. Graze on the ripest berries — they’ll turn to mush on the trip home anyway. The sun will be hot. You’ll wipe your sweaty brow with your sticky hands, which only makes the whole situation worse. The berries last a fleeting day or two, so eat them while you can. The window of ripeness always falls around Canada Day, a fitting occasion to celebrate this very Canadian plant.