[Found this article at the webpage of www.chinese-herbs.org recently. Very informatively written for everyone reading pleasure.]
Mulberry is a deciduous, fruit-bearing tree, which Latin name is Morus from the Moraceae family. It includes many species, the most popular ones being Morus alba, Morus nigra, and Morus rubra. Their names are derived from the colour of the buds, not the fruits.
Mulberries are fast-growing when young, but become slow-growing when they age. Morus trees have short rough trunk and twisted and drooping branches. Their leaves with toothed margins are alternate and simple, lobed on the young shoots and on the old trees. All the parts of the tree contain milky juice.
Mulberry may have male and female flowers on the same tree; they are usually wind-pollinated. Many small flowers are gathered in the inflorescences to form catkins, situated in the axils of the leaves. Female catkins are shorter than the male ones. The incredibly juicy fruit of the Mulberry tree is actually a collective fruit, consisting of closely-situated drupes with one seed inside.
Morus alba is the tallest tree, reaching up to 80 feet. Its fruit, smaller than in the other two species, is, however, very sweet and lacks the tartness of the Red and Black mulberries.
White mulberry is native to China. It grows well in almost any type of soil and tolerates drought and cold temperatures. It can be grown practically anywhere in the world. Black and Red mulberries are more fastidious: they need warmer climatic conditions, more fertile soils (preferably a deep loam), and good drainage with timely watering, however. These trees need full sun and much space for their large crowns. At the same time, they are wind-tolerant.
These days fruits of the Mulberry tree are widely-popularized as valuable health-promoting and nutritionally-rich foods. Some sources even state that Mulberry may be included into the list of the super foods due to its potential health benefits. Nonetheless, traditional herbalism contains many recipes of the remedies made of the Morus tree leaves and bark, which also have medicinal value.
The whole spectrum of the beneficial elements may be enjoyed in the fresh fruits of the Morus tree. At the same time, dried fruits, extracts (including leaf extract), and juices are available in the stores selling natural remedies and food supplements.
Flavonoids in the root bark of the Mulberry tree were discovered to increase the level of insulin in the body and reduce blood glucose level; therefore, they may help in controlling diabetes. The root bark is considered a mighty diuretic and expectorant. The bark of the tree has anthelmintic property.
Mulberry leaves are used to treat diabetes and hypertension, but the old leaves have tranquilizing properties and may cause hallucinations, headache, and upset stomach, so, their remedies should be used with the extreme caution.
Mulberry contains large amounts of vitamins C and K, minerals magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, calcium and iron, carbohydrates glucose and fructose, free acids (tartaric and malic), fatty acids (linoleic, stearic, and oleic), protein, pectin and fiber. The health benefits of the Morus tree are tightly connected with the elements composing its chemical structure.
On the other hand, strengthening the immune system, relieving pain from chronic inflammation (for example, caused by arthritis or atherosclerosis), and nourishing the blood have a long history of treatment with Mulberry fruits.
In addition, naturopaths recommend to lower bad cholesterol levels (thus, helping to avoid the development of cardiovascular disorders), shed excessive pounds, increase bone strength and fight osteoporosis with Mulberry remedies. Besides, maintaining healthy liver and kidneys, soothing the nerves, eliminating weakness, fatigue, and anemia is possible with them. It is interesting to note that premature graying of the hair may be stopped with Mulberry and even increasing low libido is possible with its fruits.
Do not forget that the treatment with Mulberry remedies is not only effective against the mentioned disease, but pleasant due to the taste of the fruits as well.
This plant is grown easily by just breaking a branch and plant it straight into the ground. It grows very easily under any environment in tropical climate. Normal watering and a little care will make you extremely satisfied at the end of the day when you get to see and enjoy the sweet flavor of this lovely fruits.
I grew plenty of them in my garden and each time when the fruit started to ripen, I have to fight with the notorious birds for my share. The taste is sweet and when the harvest is plentiful, I used to make them into fruit jam which is appreciated by everyone
A SPECIAL TIP FOR EVERYONE. AFTER PLUCKING THE RIPENED FRUIT (DARK PURPLISH IN COLOR), YOU WILL GET THE DARK STAINS OVER YOUR HANDS AND FINGERS.
TO REMOVE IT, JUST PLUCK A FEW OF THE RED FRUITS (THEY ARE THE UNRIPENED ONES) AND THEN, SQUASH THEM IN YOUR PALM WITH YOUR FINGERS. THE SOURISH PROPERTY WILL HELP TO REMOVE THE STAINS ALMOST INSTANTLY.