Mulberry Fruit Drop: Reasons For A Mulberry Tree Dropping Fruit
Mulberries are delicious berries akin to blackberries, which can be used in much the same way. Generally speaking, you will rarely find these delicacies at the local farmers’ market let alone the supermarket, as they have a short shelf life. The best way to ensure a good supply is by planting your own mulberry tree, but keep in mind these heavy bearers are prone to heavy mulberry fruit drop and can create quite a mess.
Mulberry Tree Dropping Fruit
Unlike other fruit bearers, mulberry trees begin bearing at an early age and quite heavily at that. Soon enough, you will have entire buckets of berries, far more than the average family can eat. Not too worry. Fruit drop in mulberry trees is very common, hence the mention of a mess. Birds will get to them but probably not before they stain the drive or sidewalk or even the soles of your shoes to be tracked indoors.
Like all fruit trees, premature fruit drop of mulberries may occur. This is generally due to several factors: weather, inadequate pollination, pests or disease, and overbearing.
What to do About Ripe Mulberry Fruit Drop
As mentioned, ripe fruit drop in mulberry tree cultivation goes with the territory. This is the nature of this particular berry tree. You can either just “go with it” or enjoy the plethora of fruit-loving birds the tree attracts, or you can lay a tarp beneath the tree during mulberry fruit drop season, which will make a tidy and rapid method for harvest.
Going in forewarned, for those who have not yet planted a mulberry, choose a site that does not hang over your driveway or sidewalk because fruit drop in mulberry trees is a guarantee, not a possibility. – Of course, you can always choose to grow a fruitless mulberry tree too, or consider sterilization of the fruit tree.
How to Fix Premature Fruit Drop of Mulberries
For any fruiting tree, the number one reason for premature fruit drop is the weather. Given that you can’t control the weather, you can take steps to protect the tree if inclement frost is forecast during the growing season. Cover the tree with sheets, burlap or the like, or string holiday lights around the tree to keep it warm. Wind can also take its toll and result in premature fruit drop. Be sure to stake young trees to prevent damage.
Companion planting can boost pollination around your mulberry and lessen the chances that inadequate pollination results in premature fruit drop. Also, avoid using pest control sprays that may affect the pollinators during bloom times. Pests and diseases can be combated with a pesticide or fungicide if the infestation is serious. Keep in mind that the use of pesticides during blossoming may exacerbate premature fruit drop by killing bees and other beneficial insects.
Lastly, premature fruit drop is often the result of overbearing, which is most common in young trees that have less stored nutrition than mature trees. If the tree is in competition between saving itself and fruiting, sending nutrients to produce berries, or survive itself, obviously the tree wins.
Sometimes trees prematurely drop fruit due to the sheer weight of it on their branches. It is of paramount importance to thin the young fruit before the tree drops it. Use a small pruner and leave 4-6 inches (10 to 15 cm.) between fruit clusters. You can also pinch off blossoms before the petals drop.
Follow all the above and barring unforeseen circumstances you should be enjoying an antioxidant, protein-packed smoothie for, well, the rest of the year given the proliferation of berries you’re bound to harvest!
Mulberry Trees Care Guide
This is one deceptive tree. Your parents probably sang you a nursery rhyme when you were younger, in which a “monkey chased the weasel” around it. But the mistake in “Pop Goes the Weasel” is that we refer to it as a bush.
Its fruit perpetrates the second deception. When its fruit ripens, it is commonly mistaken as blackberries or raspberries, depending on the species you encounter. The resemblance is uncanny, but these berries are decidedly longer.
The tree was brought here from Asia with dreams of supporting the silk industry because the leaves of one species are the preferred vegetation of silkworms. Even though the dream of everyone sleeping under silk sheets or wearing silk shirts failed, this tree has flourished in this country. In fact, Alaska and Nevada are the only two states that do not have this tree within their borders.
So let’s give the mulberry tree its just due. This article is the key to helping you learn about the tree and its delicious fruit along with a guide for taking care of it.
- General Information
- White, Common, or Silkworm Mulberry (Morus alba)
- Red Mulberry
- Care Guide
- Sunlight Requirements
- Soil Conditions
- Growing Tips
- Where Not to Plant Them
- Where to Plant Them
- Harvesting Mulberries
- Pests and Problems
Uses & Effectiveness ?
Possibly Effective for
- Diabetes. The powdered leaves of white mulberry seem to lower blood sugar in people who have type 2 diabetes. Taking the powdered leaf three times a day for 4 weeks seems to decrease fastingblood sugar levels better than the antidiabetes medicationglyburide.
Insufficient Evidence for
- High levels of cholesterol or other fats (lipids) in the blood (hyperlipidemia). In a small study of people with type 2 diabetes, taking white mulberry leaf for 4 weeks seems to reduce total cholesterol and low-density lipoprotein (LDL, or "bad") cholesterol levels.
- Prediabetes. Early research shows that taking white mulberry leaf powder leads to small reductions in blood sugar in obese people with prediabetes.
- Common cold.
- Dizziness (vertigo).
- Hair loss and premature greying.
- High blood pressure.
- Joint pain.
- Weak and brittle bones (osteoporosis).
- Sore throat.
- Ringing in the ears (tinnitus).
- Other conditions.
24 Outstanding Health Benefits of Mulberries
- powerful antioxidant
- lowers blood pressure
- strengthens immune system
- anti-aging properties
- improves blood circulation
- prevents heart disease
- high levels of potassium
- low in calories
- may help with neurological diseases
- excellent source of vitamin C
- free radical scavenger
- excellent source of iron
- good source of manganese & magnesium
- enhances appetite
- rich in B complex
- rich iv vitamin K
- protects against cancer
- cleanses the blood
- cleanses and supports the liver
- strengthens eyesight
- helps with memory
- helps with constipation
- calms nerves
Some Lesser-Known Interesting Facts about Mulberry
- Mulberries have the highest amount of antioxidants of all berries that exist under the sun.
- A type of mulberry tree is called Weeping Mulberry an exotic ornamental plant. It is named so due to its weeping habit of growth. Its long, leafy branches drape to the ground and create beautiful patterns.
- If you are a gardening expert, this info might interest you that some Shahtoot trees are dioecious (either male or female), whereas some are monoecious (have both male and female parts).
- Male trees produce a huge amount of pollen. And, female trees draw pollen and dust from the air. This is a stark contrast. Because of this pollen-absorbing feature, all-female mulberry trees have an allergy scale rating of just 1 (lowest level of allergy potential). Male trees are banned in some cities in North America.
The thinnest paper in the world ‘Tengujo’ is manufactured in Japan with Kozo. Kozo are the stems of the Mulberry tree.
- The best thing about mulberry trees is that you can pick fruits by a simple touch. Touch the branch and it will start shedding fruits
- The best way to harvest the fruits is the shake and catch method. Place a tarp below the tree and shake the branches. A single tree should be enough to give you 10 baskets full.
How to Consume Mulberries
- These berries do not keep well. So decide in advance whether you want to eat them raw, juice or preserve. And, don’t just stop with jams, Sorbets, and beverage.
- Toss Mulberries in a salad or give them a starring role in a smoothie, pies, tarts, wines, cordials, muffins, cakes, and more! This versatile fruit would make a mouth-watering addition to any recipe requiring berries.
So what do you want to do with this culinary delight? Google is flooded with mulberry recipes. But, here is one delicious smoothie that you need to try first.
- Take around 10 mulberries
- Add two to three dollops of greek yoghurt
- A dash of Almond milk and drizzle of honey
- Mix them in a blender
- And, enjoy with some ice cubes as your mid-morning beverage
Is There Any Side Effect of Mulberry?
Well! We have spoken enough about the good sides let’s talk about bad sides as well.
- Mulberry plantation is banned in some parts of North America because of the huge amount of pollen produced by male mulberry trees. These pollens pose a potential health hazard for allergic people. Sometimes, these trigger Asthma.
- Some people feel hallucinations after consuming this fruit. The reason is that the unripe fruit and some green parts of the plant have a White Sap that might be mildly toxic or hallucinogenic.
- There is no solid evidence about the safety of this fruit. So, pregnant, nursing women, and children should avoid eating this fruit.
- Diabetic patients should consult experts before consuming White Mulberries as they can reduce the blood sugar to an unhealthy level that might result in Hypoglycemia.
- One should avoid touching or eating freshly harvested part of White Mulberry. It contains a milky sap named Latex that might upset the stomach if consumed. Or, cause Dermatitis if comes in direct contact with the skin.
- Those who are suffering from kidney disorders should avoid taking this fruit as it is rich in Potassium.
The popularity of this quaint fruit can be estimated by the fact that Mulberry tree inspired the British entrepreneur Roger Saul to name his lifestyle brand after this appealing fruit.
Well! There is no doubt at all that Mulberry is loaded with benefits. But, overdo of anything can be pretty harmful.
So, please take a note that you cannot swap mulberries with any medicine without consulting with an expert or your health care provider.
That’s all for today! If you know any other benefits of Shahtoot fruit, don’t forget to tell us in the comments section.
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Juneberry / Saskatoon - Amelanchier alnifolia
Amelanchier alnifolia is closely allied with A. florida (=A. alnifolia var. semiintegrifolia, Pacific serviceberry) and frequently confused with that species. Several serviceberry species (A. arborea, A. canadensis, A. laevis and A. x grandiflora) are nearly impossible to distinguish without flowers or developing leaves, and they are commonly confused in the nursery trade. Serviceberry species readily hybridize with each other, resulting in many confusing, intermediate or hybrid forms. The sheer number of common names for this genus (close to 80) adds more confusion and makes a compelling case to discontinue the use of common names. “Saskatoon” and “Juneberry” are usually, but not always, reserved for A. alnifolia, which is the most useful species for fruit production.
The Saskatoon is a western North American species that is usually a multi-stemmed shrub growing 6 to 10 feet high, though the form is extremely variable. The fruit are bluish purple and 1/3 to 1/2 inch in diameter, and they ripen in July (Figure 10). The plants are also prized for their fall color.
Figure 10. Saskatoon fruit. (Photo courtesy of S. Berkheimer)
‘Altaglow’ - Excellent fall color.
‘Smokey’ - Produces large fruit flavor is considered excellent.
‘Honeywood’ - Said to produce fruit of excellent quality.
‘Regent’ - A compact form (4 to 6 feet) with very sweet fruit and attractive foliage. May be the most desirable cultivar for southern Michigan.
‘Success’ - Said to be a copious fruit producer, but its consistency in warmer climes may be questionable.
Other promising fruit-producing selections are ‘Parkwood’, ‘Northline’, ‘Theissen’ and ‘Pembina’.
Site and cultural requirements
The Saskatoon tolerates a wide range of soil pH and textures and is very cold hardy. A moist, well drained, acid soil and full sun are the usual cultural recommendations for all serviceberries, and their drought tolerance is believed to be among the highest of all small fruit crops. Limited grower experiences indicate that some Saskatoons may prefer cooler summers to produce a good crop and be more suited to northern Michigan. Saskatoon is occasionally grafted onto a cotoneaster rootstock. Its fruit and foliage are eaten by many birds and mammals. Saskatoons have potential for commercial production in large plantings similar to blueberries. Hardy to zones 2 to 5.
Pests and diseases
Cytospora can cause a lethal canker disease. Cedar-serviceberry rust, Gymnosporangium nelsonii, can be problematic. A leaf spot caused by Entomosporium spp. results in disfigured leaves that abscise early. Fire blight, powdery mildews, fruit rot, witches’ broom (of fungal origin), leaf miners, borers, willow scurfy scale, pear slug sawfly and pear leaf blister mite have all been reported. Many newer cultivars are reportedly free from serious diseases or pests. Check prospective cultivar choices for disease and pest resistance.
Serviceberry pie rivals blueberry for those in the know. To some palates, fresh juneberries are slightly bland, mealy and seedy. The fruits are often processed into jellies, jams, pies, syrups and wine. Slightly premature fruit is generally preferable for processing, while mature fruit is reserved for fresh eating or wine.
Using these “pointless” berries for jelly is just the tip of the iceberg.
I use mixed frozen berries in smoothies. Dried berries go in chocolate-berry-nut bark, homemade granola, baked goods, and tea blends. I turn fresh or frozen berries into fruit syrup, pies, tarts, and other pastries.
I hope you’ll add the unique taste and nutrient content of jelly fruits to your diet, and feel happy to grow plants that also benefit the wildlife.
Need more ideas for growing a permaculture garden?
What jelly fruits do you grow and how do you use them?