It’s a titoki berry. And today I found my first one ever. There it was on the pavement, like a lucious little strawberry inside an acorn-like cup. It looked good enough to eat, but evidently they don’t taste fantastic, even though Maori children used to eat them.
There’s one, up in the tree, hidden inside the brown seed cases. You would never know they were there, except that I happened to spot some red stains on the pavement, and then found the one intact berry.
The amazing thing is that the fruit-bearing titoki tree is next door to where I now live. I could so easily have missed it, but I’m learning to watch out for things as I take my walks, and keeping this blog is honing my powers of observation.
The titoki doesn’t fruit every year; in fact there’s a proverb that says a tree bears fruit kia puta tana hiahia —when it wants to. So both the titoki and me had to be ready to find each other.
I’m so happy to have found this beautiful, lush little gem!