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The White Mulberry — more than just a canopy tree

As part of our service to gardeners and growers (and those keen on setting up a productive and attractive garden) we at Evergreen Growers like to feature — and discuss — a selected plant available in our nursery.

This week it’s the turn of the versatile and fruit-bearing White Mulberry tree.

The attractive and multi-tasking Mulberry has its place in Australian history as the source of delicious fruit — and purple stains on clothing, outdoor furniture and pathways — for many generations of Australian children. The tree also serves as the sole fruit for the silkworm and has at times been an important food source during those periods in our nation’s history when food may not have been so available.

Growing up with a neighbourhood Mulberry tree is a fixture in the memories of many senior Australians. An ABC’s Local Stories program recently interviewed Streaky Bay, SA resident Peter Brock on his memories of the trees as part of his childhood.

With the trend moving back towards growing your own produce becoming ever more popular, why not consider a Mulberry tree in your back yard? If you are considering planting a Mulberry though, make sure you have plenty of room to let it grow as many varieties grow into large trees with an extended canopy. Ensure too that the tree doesn’t overhang paths and driveways so that dropping fruit won’t stain these or any outdoor furniture.

The White Mulberry (Morus Alba), offered as tubestock by Evergreen Growers, is a marvellous example of this genus.

Description
A deciduous tree with large lime green leaves, the White Mulberry grows to between 6 – 8 metres in height and 4 – 5 metres wide. It is important to take this into account when working out a suitable area to plant the tree.

White Mulberry tubestock

The attractive leaves, which provide a welcome shady canopy in summer, turn orange in autumn before falling. Masses of delicious pink to white fruit ripen during the warmer months which provide a welcome supply of fruit for jams, flans, pies…or eaten straight from the tree!

The Mulberry is fast growing and has low water needs once established. However it is advisable to keep watering once planted and during the warmer months when water may be scarce. Avoid planting where there are high winds however the tree is very cool weather tolerant and can handle temperatures down to -10 degrees Celsius.

If you have the space, why not try a White Mulberry? This native of China is more than just an ornamental. Need more advice? Contact us here, we’d be happy to hear from you. For more detailed planting and growing information see the dedicated Evergreen Growers page here.

For other instructive articles on growing Mulberries see below:

http://www.burkesbackyard.com.au/factsheets/Flowering-Plants-and-Shrubs/Mulberry/2127

http://www.wascene.com/home-garden/how-to-grow-mulberries/

http://permaculturetokyo.blogspot.com.au/2009/07/species-of-month-morus-alba-white.html

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