Gerardi Dwarf Mulberry anyone?

Wondering if anyone here has a Gerardi Mulberry ? and perhaps growing it in TN ? or in a nearby State doing well ? and how you like it ? comments on the fruit produced ?

Last winter I was researching mulberry varieties and came across this one (Gerardi). I found a guy on Youtube that has lots of Mulberry varieties growing in GA (and lots of other fruit trees), and he really bragged on the Gerardi Mulberry. Said it is his favorite and he eats more fruit from it than any of his other varieties (and he has several).

It is a rather small bush, does not get big, does not need a lot of pruning… produces loads of sweet tart fruit, easy to pick even for kids… and it produces fruit for a couple of months… He said his (In GA) starts ripening fruit at the end of April, and produces fruit for about 2 months). The fruit load was nice and the berries good sized.

Note I have a Illinois Everbearing mulberry, that I expect to fruit for me this year but I understand this variety will require quite a bit of pruning to keep it small enough for the fruit to be within reach.

One thing I liked about this Gerardi, is that he said it really requires no pruning, it only gets like 8-10 ft tall, and more of a bush shape. Fruit sets and hangs low on the “bush” mulberry, and is easy pickings even for kids.

The youtuber strudeldog11 has a couple of vids showing his off and he talks quite a bit about it. In his first video he shows it loaded with fruit, sometime in May, and said he got his first ripe fruit late in April.
In May it was loaded with fruit… and the second video is June 14 and it still has lots of ripe (black), some red and still some green berries… so it was obviously bearing over a long period of time.

strudeldog11 in GA, obviously likes this variety. Anyone else have experience with this Dwarf Black Mulberry “bush” ?

Below is what the Nursery catalog I have (Burnt Ridge Nursery) says about it.

GERARDI - Naturally dwarf form of mulberry. Quick to Bear, sweet black fruit, Originally from Himalayas. Selected by Louis Gerardi in Illinois, resistent to popcorn disease. Zone 4-9.

I would like to have a nice small mulberry like this (something that did not require a lot of pruning), easy for kids to pick and eat (thinking about future grandkids here, and some of my kids smaller cousins)… In the catalog they said “sweet black fruit”… and the youtouber described it as sweet/tart… and I am Ok with either of those.

If you are not familiar with with this specific variety… but can recommend something similar please do.
I want to get another mulberry in place this spring.

Thanks a lot !

TNHunter

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The above website is maintained by one of our members. I had a large wild Mulberry in my front yard that was struck by lightning and perished. Other than that I have little firsthand experience. I did place an order for a weeping Mulberry from burnt Ridge and am probably getting a Girardi from Edible Landscaping this spring.

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I have had Gerardi for 3 years. I am in a different climate near Seattle. Mine has not impressed me much yet. Super slow growing so far. Mine is from Burnt Ridge and came in at maybe 1’ tall. I think it’s still less that 2’. Fruit has been bland that I’ve eaten so far. It could be my climate and many things I’ve grown greatly improve once they are fully established so I’m not giving up on it yet.

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Discs… thanks for that link.

Silk hope - sounds like a good option for my location for a med size tree. I am in zone 7a in TN… and NC where it was discovered similar climate. The guy on the youtube vid just kept saying how good it tasted. A little tart and a lot sweet. Great flavor… I may have to add one of those to my collection.

The state of GA is one state south of me…
And that is where the guy was bragging so much on the gerardi mulberry. He said some report it to be slow growing…
But he showed a graft he did that grew 3-4 ft in a year. He said it taste similar to Illinois Everbearing… he liked it… still considering one of those…

TNHunter

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I am zone 6A. I believe there are a few varieties that are out of reach for me based on my zone. You certainly may have better luck with the less hardy, supposedly better tasting choices. If you are pushing it, try to find a sheltered southern exposure spot. Good luck!

I ordered small ‘Gerardi’ from Edible Landscaping. We’ll see, I have not seen them, but need small trees in my yard. ‘Illinois Everbearing’ has a popcorn disease problem here, hopefully ‘Gerardi’ does not. Several mulberry here that I picked from the year before last, liked them a lot. The house has sold and I suspect trees will be gone soon. I cut scion and may graft them onto trees that popped up where they were unwanted, or Gerardi if dwarf habit is good as a rootstock.
You might try the ‘Silk Hope’, that also gets good reviews and was on my list.

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Gerardi is supposed to stay very tiny. I plan to keep my weeping Mulberry pruned to 10 ft max although I think it stays short as well (generally).

Gerardi has been my fastest growing mulberry :grinning: However its also in one of the best spots but clearly grows much faster than contorted. The positive is its the only mulberry so far to not fruit during a frost for me however the fruit i got (and only for the first time and i did water a decent amount because of all the smoke) was not near as good as the wild ones i was used too.

I hope over the next few years it becomes the intense blackberry style flavour i am used too from the wild mulberries out west.

My Gerardi grew about 5% as much as Worlds Best. Furthermore I don’t like the growth habit. It’s bent over and needs support to get an upright tree. I’ll get fruit soon so will have more to add.

I’m in north Georgia not far from the video maker you posted @strudeldog . My Geraldi is only a 2-3 year old. Fruit is just okay imo however because of its growth it’s a keeper especially because my kids are small and can pick it. I’m trying to acquire a silk hope to graft that should taste better but be much harder to control.

I have one here in 7A but it isn’t in the ground yet. strudeldog used to post here

My Gerardi spent a year in a RootMaker fabric pot before going in the ground this Spring. Wow did it take off. It’s about 5.5’x5.5’ right now. Very symmetrical globe shape and very healthy looking. No fruit yet but hopefully next season.

Where did you get it?

The fruit is mediocre at best. Mine is gone never to be replaced.

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^ seconded. But the taste really isn’t the attraction. It’s the [dwarf] accessibility with minimal pruning.

This was from raintree or one green world I will try and find out which. This year it was also insipid and bland the few Wellington I got were much much better and had the flavour I remember from my childhood trees. My assumption is it’s grafted to a alba and growing as fast as one of those. Same alba taste with a deceptively dark tasty looking berry

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I’m also in TN, zone 7a. I ordered a Girardi from edible landscaping this spring. It was tiny when I received it, but had put on about 3 foot of growth this summer. I had to stake out to keep it upright. It actually set one fruit this fall, and I’m wondering if it had popcorn disease. I’ve not had popcorn disease on any of my other mulberries, so I’m not positive if that’s what it is.

I have 2 gerardis, one in ground, one in pot
The one in pot is growing much faster, but still no where as fast as any other of my mulberries, even a Nigra i have in pot is growing faster :grinning:

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