BugwoodWiki Article

white mulberry
Morus alba L.

Overview

Appearance
Morus alba is a small, 30-50 ft. (9.1-15.2 m) tall, deciduous tree that invades disturbed areas throughout the United States.
Foliage
The alternate leaves are polymorphic (variably shaped), 2-8 in. (5.1-20.3 cm) long and shiny with blunt teeth and heart-shaped bases. Young bark, the bark along the roots, and the inner bark along the trunk are often bright orange in color. Older bark is gray with narrow, irregular fissures.
Flowers
Flowering occurs in April. Plants are normally dioecious (male and female flowers on separate plants). Male flowers are small, green and occur in 1-2 in. (2.5-5.1 cm) long catkins. Female flowers are inconspicuous and crowded in short spikes.
Fruit
Fruits are multiple-seeded berries. They can range in color from black to pink or even white when ripe.
Ecological Threat
Morus alba is very similar to the native red mulberry (Morus rubra), but may be distinguished by the leaves. Morus alba leaves have glossy surfaces whereas the leaves of Morus rubra do not. Morus alba is found throughout the United States, where it invades old fields, urban lots, roadsides, forest edges, and other disturbed areas. It poses an ecological threat by displacing native species, possibly hybridizing with and transmitting a root disease to the native Morus rubra. Morus alba is native to Asia and was introduced in colonial times as a food source for silkworms.

Resources

Selected Images


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5395979

white mulberry
Morus alba
Tree(s)
Robert Vidéki
5344095
5344095

white mulberry
Morus alba
Foliage
David J. Moorhead
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5344094

white mulberry
Morus alba
Foliage
David J. Moorhead
5423420
5423420

white mulberry
Morus alba
Foliage
Rebekah D. Wallace
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5392390

white mulberry
Morus alba
Foliage
John M. Randall
1557422
1557422

white mulberry
Morus alba
Plant(s)
John Cardina
1557417
1557417

white mulberry
Morus alba
Fruit(s)
Theodore Webster
1380437
1380437

white mulberry
Morus alba
Fruit(s)
Chris Evans
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1550141

white mulberry
Morus alba
Seed(s)
Ohio State Weed Lab Archive
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5397621

white mulberry
Morus alba
Twig(s)/Shoot(s)
Robert Vidéki
1550143
1550143

white mulberry
Morus alba
Feature(s)
John Cardina
5454263
5454263

white mulberry
Morus alba
Bark
Vern Wilkins

Maps


EDDMapS Distribution - This map is incomplete and is based only on current site and county level reports made by experts, herbaria, and literature. For more information, visit www.eddmaps.org

EDDMapS Distribution

State Regulated List - This map identifies those states that list this species on their regulated list. For more information, visit Invasive.org

State Regulated List

Taxonomic Rank

Kingdom: Plantae
Phylum: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Subclass: Hamamelidae
Order: Urticales
Family: Moraceae
Genus: Morus

Other System Links

Plants: MOAL
Bayer: MORAL
GRIN: 24607
ITIS: 19066
NPDN Pest: PDGADBA
NPDN Host: 35517

Synonyms and Other Names

Other Common Names:
mulberry

Related Scientific Names:

Morus tatarica L.(Synonym)

Categories

Category: Hardwood Trees
Category: Shrub or Subshrub