27th November 2019
Kensington Gardens, Hyde Park and the streets and squares of this part of London have an unusually large number of mature mulberry trees – including examples of the white mulberry, which is the species most often grown to feed silkworms, and which is rare in the U.K. The walk will take in a unique avenue with 14 white mulberries and 8 mature black mulberries.
This late autumn walk is the first in a cycle of four lunchtime walks that will focus on these two species of mulberry throughout the seasons. Winter is a chance to see the trees without foliage, showing off their individual shape. I often choose winter to photograph trees, for that reason.
Other walks will be timed next year to observe the male and female catkins and first leaves in April/May, then the characteristic leaf shapes and fruit of the different species and cultivars in July. Finally, next Autumn, we will enjoy the magnificent yellow of the leaves.
The walk starts at Kensington High Street station and explores some of the nearby streets and squares that harbour (black) mulberries. We will pass beneath a 70-year-old black mulberry growing in the famous Roof Gardens at the top of what used to be the Derry & Toms department store on Kensington High Street. The gardens are closed until next year, but we will schedule a visit as soon as they reopen.
In Kensington Gardens we will spend some time exploring its unique avenue of mulberries, before ambling to Hyde Park Corner, to find a clutch of mature and recently planted mulberry trees there. On the way, we will pass iconic London scenery, both natural and architectural. Last time I was there I even saw a game of polo…
The walk finishes at Hyde Park Corner tube station, which is also on several bus routes.
Booking is essential. To reserve your place and for further details, click here.Find out more