The genus Morus, as treated here, comprises 19 species of which 9 are currently included in this database. It has been proposed (Zeng Q et al, (2015) Definition of Eight Mulberry Species in the Genus Morus by Internal Transcribed SpacerBased Phylogeny. PLoS ONE 10(8): e0135411.doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0135411) that there are only eight distinct species in this genus. If this treatment is accepted then this species will no longer be considered distinct, but as part of Morus alba.
Morus acidosa Griff.
Morus alba indica Bureau
Morus alba nigriformis Bureau
Morus alba stylosa Bureau
Morus amamiana Nakai
Morus arabica (Bureau) Koidz
Morus australis Poir.
Morus bombycis Koidz.
Morus cashmeriana Royle
Morus caudatifolia Koidz.
Morus cavaleriei H.Lév.
Morus expansa Raf.
Morus formosensis (Hotta) Hotta
Morus hachijoensis (Hotta) Hotta
Morus hastifolia F.T.Wang & T.Tang ex Z.Y.Cao
Morus inusitata H.Lév.
Morus kagayamae Koidz.
Morus latifolia Poir.
Morus longistyla Diels
Morus mizuho Hotta
Morus rotundiloba Koidz.
Morus stylosa Ser.
Morus stylosa ovalifolia Ser.
Common Name: Korean Mulberry
Morus indica is a deciduous shrub or small tree that can grow up to 7.5 metres tall.
The plant is harvested from the wild for local use as a food, medicine and source of fibre. The fruits are sometimes sold for food in local markets[
E. Asia - India, Nepal, Bangladesh, Myanmar, southern and eastern China, Japan, Korea, Vietnam, Thailand, Laos
]. Forest margins, mountain slopes, fallow land and scrub in valleys in limestone areas; at elevations from 500 - 2,000 metres[
Morus indica is a very cold-hardy plant, being able to tolerate short periods with temperatures down to around -20°c when fully dormant[
Prefers a warm well-drained loamy soil in a sunny position[
Mulberries have brittle roots and so need to be handled with care when planting them out[
Any pruning should only be carried out in the winter when the plant is fully dormant because mulberries bleed badly when cut[
]. Ideally prune only badly placed branches and dead wood[
Plants in this genus are notably resistant to honey fungus[
Fruit - raw, cooked and used in preserves[
]. Sweet and juicy[
] but insipid[
]. The red to dark purple fruit is about 10 - 15mm in diameter[
The fruit is aromatic, cooling and laxative[
]. Its use allays thirst and it is of help in the treatment of fevers[
The bark is anthelmintic and purgative[
]. A paste of the bark is used in the treatment of gingivitis[
A decoction of the leaves is used as a gargle in treating inflammation of the vocal chords[
The root is anthelmintic and astringent[
]. A decoction of the root is used in the treatment of internal parasited[
The root bark is diuretic and pectoral[
]. A decoction is used in the treatment of 'hot' pulmonary coughing, asthma, excessive sputum production, oedematous face and difficult urination[
The bark fibers are used for making paper[
Extracts of various parts of the plant are used as ingredients in commercial cosmetic preparations as antiseborrheic, antimicrobials, antioxidants, astringents, emollients and hair conditioner[
The seed germinates best if given 2 - 3 months cold stratification[
]. Sow the seed as soon as it is ripe if possible, otherwise in late winter in a cold frame. The seed usually germinates in the first spring, though it sometimes takes another 12 months. Prick out the seedlings into individual pots when they are large enough to handle and grow them on in the cold frame for their first winter. Plant them out in late spring or early summer after the last expected frosts.
Cuttings of half-ripe wood, 7 - 10cm with a heel, mid summer in a frame. Plant out in spring. A good percentage take, though they sometimes fail to thrive[
Cuttings of mature wood of the current season's growth, 25 - 30cm with a heel of 2 year old wood, autumn or early spring in a cold frame or a shady bed outside[
]. Bury the cuttings to threequarters of their depth.
Layering in autumn[