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Morus nigra (Black mulberry )

Beginner
skill rating
1 hour care
per year
12m
Max height
12m
Max spread
20-50 years
To maturity

Plant details

Botanical name

Morus nigra

Other names

Persian mulberry, Sycamine tree, Black mulberry , Common mulberry, Toot tree

Genus

Morus Morus

Species

M. nigra - M. nigra is a small, broad-crowned deciduous tree with heart-shaped dark green leaves, yellowing in autumn, and insignificant green flowers which are followed by dark purplish-red edible berries.


Morus nigra is: Deciduous

Tree shape

Rounded to broadly spreading

Awards

RHS AGM (Award of Garden Merit)

Flower

Green in Summer

Foliage

Dark-green in Spring; Dark-green in Summer; Pale-yellow in Autumn

How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest-free.

Bark canker , Leaf spot , Powdery mildew Bark canker , Leaf spot , Powdery mildew

General care

Pruning

To prevent bleeding, prune in late autumn or early winter.

Propagation methods

Seed, Semi-hardwood cuttings


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Where to grow

Morus nigra (Black mulberry ) will reach a height of 12m and a spread of 12m after 20-50 years.

Suggested uses

Architectural, Cottage/Informal, Flavouring food and drinks, Low Maintenance, Wildlife

Cultivation

Plant in spring in fertile, humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil in a sunny position with shelter from cold, drying winds.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained, Well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Full Sun

Aspect

South, East, West

Exposure

Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4)

Companion plants

Botanical name

Morus nigra

Other names

Persian mulberry, Sycamine tree, Black mulberry , Common mulberry, Toot tree

Genus

Morus Morus

Species

M. nigra - M. nigra is a small, broad-crowned deciduous tree with heart-shaped dark green leaves, yellowing in autumn, and insignificant green flowers which are followed by dark purplish-red edible berries.

Native to

Southwestern Asia

Foliage

Deciduous

Tree shape

Rounded to broadly spreading

Awards

RHS AGM (Award of Garden Merit)


Colour

Flower

Green in Summer

Foliage

Dark-green in Spring; Dark-green in Summer; Pale-yellow in Autumn


How to care

Watch out for

Pests

Generally pest-free.

Specific diseases

Bark canker , Leaf spot , Powdery mildew

General care

Pruning

To prevent bleeding, prune in late autumn or early winter.

Propagation methods

Seed, Semi-hardwood cuttings


Monthly care advice


Where to grow

Morus nigra (Black mulberry ) will reach a height of 12m and a spread of 12m after 20-50 years.

Suggested uses

Architectural, Cottage/Informal, Flavouring food and drinks, Low Maintenance, Wildlife

Cultivation

Plant in spring in fertile, humus-rich, moist but well-drained soil in a sunny position with shelter from cold, drying winds.

Soil type

Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types)

Soil drainage

Moist but well-drained, Well-drained

Soil pH

Acid, Alkaline, Neutral

Light

Full Sun

Aspect

South, East, West

Exposure

Sheltered

UK hardiness Note: We are working to update our ratings. Thanks for your patience.

Hardy (H4)

USDA zones

Zone 10, Zone 9, Zone 8, Zone 7, Zone 6

Defra's Risk register #1

Plant name

Morus nigra (Black mulberry )

Common pest name

Alfalfa dwarf; Anaheim disease; California vine disease; Dwarf disease of alfalfa; Dwarf disease of lucerne; Leaf scald of oleander; Leaf scald of plum; Leaf scorch; Phony disease of peach; Pierce's disease of grapevine; Variegated chlorosis of citrus

Scientific pest name

Xylella fastidiosa subsp. multiplex

Type

Bacterium

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

3

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

A bacterial disease with a wide host range detected in Corsica. Although EU regulated; there remains some concern about the risk of introduction. This subspecies is known to be able to thrive in cooler climates. Should an outbreak occur; there would be a need for eradication action which would result in environmental and social impacts.

Defra's Risk register #2

Plant name

Morus nigra (Black mulberry )

Common pest name

Apple root knot nematode

Scientific pest name

Meloidogyne mali

Type

Nematode

Current status in UK

Unknown

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

3

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

UK (along with certain other European countries) received potentially infested trees in 1992; but these were destroyed at the end of the trial period and targeted surveillance has failed to find any trace of the nematode. Main impacts are on elm; apple and mulberry and industry should source such material carefully.

Defra's Risk register #3

Plant name

Morus nigra (Black mulberry )

Common pest name

assam thrips; castor thrips; chilli thrips; yellow tea thrips

Scientific pest name

Scirtothrips dorsalis

Type

Insect

Current status in UK

Absent

Likelihood to spread to UK (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

2

Impact (1 is very low - 5 is very high)

4

General biosecurity comments

EU listed pest for citrus but highly polyphagous and intercepted on a number of hosts. EU legislation should be updated to reflect wider host list.

About this section

Our plants are under greater threat than ever before. There is increasing movement of plants and other material traded from an increasing variety of sources. This increases the chances of exotic pests arriving with imported goods and travellers, as well as by natural means. Shoot is working with Defra to help members to do their part in preventing the introduction and spread of invasive risks.

Traveling or importing plants? Please read "Don't risk it" advice here

Suspected outbreak? Click here for contact details to report to the relevant authority.

Date updated: 7th March 2019 For more information visit: https://planthealthportal.defra.gov.uk/

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This plant likes... Garden match
Soil types: Chalky, Clay, Loamy, Sandy (will tolerate most soil types) Tell us...
Soil drainage: Moist but well-drained, Well-drained Tell us...
Soil pH: Acid, Alkaline, Neutral Tell us...
Light: Full Sun Tell us...
Aspect: South, East, West Tell us...
Exposure: Sheltered Tell us...
Hardiness: Hardy (H4) Tell us...

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