Various fruit trees grow in the garden. These are apple, pear, cherry, plum and sweet cherry. However, the white mulberry tree is quite rare in it. But in the recent past, it was very popular and affordable. The older generation of gardeners has a lot to say about the beneficial plant that has now become exotic.
An amazing long-liver originally from China. It has long been cultivated as a fodder crop. The leaves of the tree served as food for the silkworm – the producer of raw materials for the manufacture of unique fabrics.
Gardeners grow the Morus mulberry tree not for silk production, but as an ornamental and fruit crop. The genus consists of twenty-four species. Of these, white and black mulberries are fruitful, a distinctive characteristic of which is the color of the bark of an adult plant.
Many gardeners mistakenly believed that mulberries are distinguished by the color of their berries. However, this is not at all the case.
White mulberry has a light bark color. But the berries can be white, cream, pink, purple or completely black. The numerous genus Morus is represented by dioecious and, more rarely, monoecious trees.
Most are thermophilic plants that can be grown in southern areas. Only the white mulberry in the middle lane does not freeze, grows well and bears fruit.
Not every fruit plant can boast of its longevity. Within two hundred or even three hundred years, a white mulberry tree will give birth, over time without changing its qualities.
The spreading tree reaches a height of twenty to thirty-five meters. Often it is formed in the form of a two- or three-meter bush. The bark is light. The spherical crown is densely covered with oval foliage.
Coliform inflorescences of a white mulberry tree are small. They are light green in color. A dioecious or, less commonly, the monoecious plant is wind-pollinated. Drupe fruits are formed in the form of small fruits. They have a pleasant sweetish taste.
Depending on the variety, the berries can be colored in different colors. White mulberry ripens from May to July. She bears fruit in the fifth year after planting. The yield is high.
The berry picking period is somewhat extended due to uncomfortable ripening. They are not transportable and poorly stored, used immediately after removal.
This white mulberry tree is winter-hardy and drought-resistant. These qualities characterize the plant as quite hardy and unpretentious. It is suitable for areas with any type of soil.
In addition to these advantages, the white mulberry tree is a medicinal plant. The fruits are high in vitamins. In addition, they contain a flavonoid, morin, carotene, fatty acids, and iron salts. Not only berries have medicinal properties. The bark and leaves of the tree are also used medicinally.
White Mulberry Tree Varieties
White mulberry tree can act as a fodder, fruit and ornamental crop. They are presented in various varieties with individual characteristics.
So, among the fruitful varieties, white honey mulberry is quite attractive. It is characterized by relative frost resistance and unpretentiousness, resistance to diseases.
A tall, deciduous tree has a wide crown. Simple oval leaves are light green in color. Inflorescences are spike-shaped. The juicy fruits are white in color.
Good taste. Long-term harvesting begins at the end of June. Uneven ripening of fruits lasts until early August. Fresh berries are stored for no more than six hours. They practically do not tolerate transportation.
White mulberry tree varieties Baronessa is a deciduous dioecious plant. A dense, well-leafy crown has a spherical shape. Flowers are dioecious. They are light in color and form a spike-shaped inflorescence.
Large berries, which are 3.5 cm in size and 1.5 cm in diameter, are densely colored black. The aromatic complex drupe has a sweet, pleasant taste. Unlike the previous variety, the fruits are relatively transportable. The shelf life is twelve hours. High-yielding variety.
The berry picking period is June-July. This white mulberry tree is an unpretentious plant with high frost-resistant indicators.
Blackberry Mulberry is a tall, spreading tree with a pyramidal crown. Large fruits reach three centimeters. Black berries are very juicy. The taste is excellent. The slightly acidic taste does not spoil the berries.
This variety is less winter-hardy than the Baroness. In winter, the twigs can freeze slightly. An unpretentious plant has a high yield. Fruit ripening occurs at the beginning of July.
In addition to fruit species, there are more than four hundred decorative forms. Mulberry varieties differ in the shape and color of the crown and foliage. These are spectacular plants that are used in landscape design.
Trees and shrubs, alleys, and hedges, which include white mulberry trees, are wonderful. Their openwork crown goes well with evergreens.
Weeping The White Mulberry Tree
A low-growing tree or shrub reaches a height and width of up to three meters. It has a very decorative appearance. The elongated branches of the mulberry tree hang down. This form is irreplaceable in landscape design and will be a decoration for any garden.
The dark green large leaves, which can be eight to twenty centimeters long, are heart-shaped. In autumn they turn yellow.
The flowering period is from May to June. Mulberry bears fruit with few fruits. They are edible and have a pleasant sweet taste.
In addition, there are spherical, dissected-leaved, Tatar and golden forms of white mulberry. Each of them has its own advantages and is widely used for single or group landings.
Often summer residents do not dare to plant mulberries, since space is limited in a small area. “Is my garden fit for trendy exoticism?” – such a question arises among gardeners when choosing one or another variety of a long-lived giant.
Growing mulberries provides several ways to form the plant, which will limit the height. A tall, powerful, spreading tree requires a larger area of nutrition.
Mulberry planting is carried out according to the scheme of 5 x 6 m. When limiting the height of the white mulberry tree and growing in the form of a bush, the scheme is different and is 2 x 3 m.
The white mulberry tree is unpretentious. It grows equally well in unfavorable urban conditions and in suburban summer cottages. The corner of the garden in which the mulberry will grow should be well lit.
Planting and caring for white mulberry trees follows the generally accepted rules for fruit trees. Saplings are planted in early spring. The landing site should be such as not to damage the root system.
For better rooting, a mixture of humus and sand is added to the hole. Water the planting hole abundantly and sprinkle it with soil. Around the trunk of the seedling, the soil is mulched with peat. In the autumn, planting is performed one and a half months before the onset of frost.
Pruning The White Mulberry Tree
So that the tree does not grow tall and looks well-groomed, its crown is formed, limiting the growth to three meters. In addition, last year’s young growths may freeze slightly in winter.
They need to be removed. Mulberry pruning has no individual characteristics. They carry out sanitary and anti-aging techniques, which they perform, following the generally accepted recommendations for fruit trees and shrubs.
The white mulberry tree tolerates a haircut very well. This should be done regularly. Thinning of the crown is carried out annually. In this case, diseased, damaged and weak branches are subject to removal. Crossed shoots are also cut off.
White mulberry ripens in summer. Ripe fruits are suitable for obtaining seeds. After harvesting, some of the berries are left in the sun. They are slightly overripe. Then they are placed in a container for several days.
Juicy fruits should turn sour. Then they are ground in water. Full-weight seeds sink to the bottom of the container. This mass is rubbed through a fine sieve. The resulting seeds are dried. They must be used throughout the year. They quickly lose their germination.
Several methods are used to obtain young plants. Seed propagation is possible. This method is started with stratification. The seeds are kept at a temperature of zero or five degrees for a month.
A greenhouse is pre-prepared. In early April, mulberries will be sown in it. Reproduction in this way allows you to have forty-centimeter seedlings already in the autumn.
Vaccinations on frost-resistant stock
In order to preserve the maternal traits of a particular strain, grafting will be more effective. This method is more complicated. It requires careful selection of breeding material. Winter mulberry grafting is often used.
Young plants of frost-resistant mulberry varieties grown from seeds are used as a stock. They are dug up and stored in wet sawdust. The storage temperature should be zero degrees.
Grafts are also stored in moist sawdust. After grafting, the planting material is placed in boxes and kept at a temperature of twenty-five degrees. After that, they are stored in moist sawdust at zero temperature until spring.
Mulberry grafting in the spring is carried out on last year’s rootstocks. This event falls on the period before bud break. Cuttings cut in the fall are used. They are stored throughout the winter in wet sawdust at zero temperature.
You can also vaccinate in the summer. To do this, use the blanks of the current year.
Propagation by green cuttings
Planting material is harvested in the second decade of June. Green shoots are suitable, the length of which is at least fifteen centimeters. They are cut from non-lignified branches.
The blanks are processed by removing the lower leaves and shortening the upper ones by half. Before rooting, the cuttings are kept for six hours in an aqueous solution of heteroauxin.
Or they are placed in a mixture of sand and peat, which is moistened with this solution. Green cuttings are rooted indoors. The main condition is high air humidity. To create a greenhouse effect, cover with plastic wrap is performed.
Diseases and pests
Like any culture, white mulberry is susceptible to infection. It can be affected by diseases such as bacteriosis, powdery mildew and root rot.
In the spring, prophylactic spraying of the tree with special preparations is carried out.
There are also many pests in the white mulberry tree. Beetles, bear, mulberry barbel, wireworm and spider mite damage various parts of the plant. Mechanical and chemical methods are used to combat them. In the autumn, the fallen leaves must be removed and burned.
Features of harvesting
White mulberry is characterized by an extended fruiting period. The berries ripen unevenly. On the one hand, this is good. For a longer period, the white mulberry tree will delight with ripe juicy fruits.
However, ripe fruits should be removed in a timely manner. Almost all varieties of white mulberry are poorly stored. They are not transportable. If there is a delay in picking, the berries crumble, which leads to their spoilage. After removal, the fruits are immediately processed or consumed fresh.
Useful Properties of The White Mulberry Tree
Consult a doctor before self–medicating
The medicinal properties of the white mulberry tree have been known for a long time. The use of fresh berries helps to improve the general condition of a person.
The white mulberry tree helps to normalize the nervous system. It is included in weight loss diets. Low-calorie berry perfectly normalizes metabolism. In addition, the plant cleanses the intestines and promotes the elimination of toxins.
Mulberries are most often consumed fresh. It is also cooked. It is suitable for future workpieces. You can make juices, syrups, preserves and marmalades.
Wines and liqueurs have an exquisite taste. It is also dried. As such, it is used instead of sugar. White mulberry is irreplaceable in cosmetology. It is included in various hair, face and body masks.
However, with all the advantages, one should not forget about the individual characteristics of the organism. Like any drug, the use of mulberries also has contraindications.
Excessive use can be harmful. The berries are not advised to be used by diabetics. Dried mulberry leaves will be more useful for them.