Many teens heading home from school these days are sidestepping sticky purple patches on the sidewalk, cursing as the red and black squishes under their sandals and into their toes. What to make of this colorful mess? Jam! Compote! Muffins! Most anything, in fact, that you could make with a blueberry. The sticky patches are from mulberries, fruits that grow prolifically in June. Often, they are free for the picking in many neighborhoods, even in New York City.
As Serious Eats points out, summer brings a wealth of berries, fruit and greens growing wild in public. And they’re all free–if you know what you’re looking for and where to look.