Friday, 25 April 2008

A sticky tale

Black Wattle

When I was young, and roaming free over the countryside with my friends, one of our favourite activities was climbing Black Wattles Acacia mearnsii. The one above, flowering last November, is relatively young. As they get older the branches bend and reach the ground and are big enough for a child to climb along.

There was a purpose to our clambering. We were after the wattle gum, the sap that oozes out of this particular species of wattle. When it's fresh the texture is like honey and it's taste not as sweet. If a little older the gum is still edible but gets stuck in your teeth. If it's very old leave it there because it's horrible. I've tasted it as an adult and can't see what the attraction was because it has no flavour at all. But we had a lot of fun.

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