Two "species" of Morus nigra mulberry?


I’ve got one survivor. I’d say I had about 50% germination but some little worm kept finding the seeds when they sent out their initial root and would eat the tiny plants as they were pushing out of their seed cases. Hopefully I can nurse this little guy along. Thanks again, @pileta.


Drew, yours look way better than mine. I’ve had this one growing for like three months now and it’s got a woody stem, but yours seem to be growing much faster. What’s your setup?


Congrats! Not easy to germinate these rascals!!! From here on, it’s all about endurance. I have four in the ground after being in pots for four years. Let’s see how they fare…


OK good, it’s not just me, I got lucky with these. Well at least you have 4 and from a different gene pool. I will try with the rest in the spring. I have tomato and pepper seeds to germinate right now.

For a seedling and for a tree it seems slow. I think the key to germination is the proper soil moisture and temp for the seed. No seeds are the same. So each species has it’s quirks.I use my T5 lights and it keeps the soil from becoming too wet, light watering to try and maintain a moist condition at all times. Dry or wet for as short as time as possible. The soil was recycled custom potting soil, nothing special, no bottom heat, but that might be worth trying? Experience really helps. I germinated fig seeds last year, but I lost them all to a very hard frost when out of town.I’m not going to lose these, I’m pissed about it and now on a mission.

The seedling appear to be developing branches already, maybe I’m not seeing it right, but it looks to me that both have lateral branches forming. It’s about 6 weeks old. i should be writing this stuff down in my journal. I’ll start. The T5 lights rock, cost money, one ballast already blew in 5 years, I guess not bad? I’m going to switch to LED one of these days. I still have 4 new bulbs, so as long as the ballasts and bulbs last I’m using them.

The top you can’t see well. Mostly figs from rooted cuttings, a couple poms from cuttings.
Top right is a fan, another trick, keep those stems strong, works great for tomatoes too.
I keep the fan on 24/7. Bottom left is a little 2 bulb, 2 foot T5 germinating set up. My onions are in there now. Soon to go outside and I’ll start peppers then tomatoes.
I spilled soil, and my vacuum broke. I just bought a new one today. So pardon the mess!
Old carpet not worth crap anyway.


Hi Drew and Steven,

how long did it take from sowing til sprouting?

My seeds from pileta went into the soil yesterday. I will keep them indoors under lights until late may. Fingers crossed for a good germination rate. 50% would be fine since pileta did send enough seeds. I am really looking forward to these.


About 2 weeks, i would try for a month.


How did I miss this thread Interesting stuff


Yeah, some sprouted within a few days and others took up to a month. Good luck


I agree, some cool stuff being discussed. I only found this thread last night, had to read the whole thing.

I do wonder what the appeal of Morus Nigra, is it like the be-all end-all mulberry? What do they taste like? I’ve never had any mulberries, so I don’t know what a basic one tastes like.

We had a huge mulberry in our back yard when I was growing up in OK. We never ate any of the fruit that I can remember. The tree ended up being cut down as it was encroaching on power lines.


it is to many mulb aficionados. Myself included. It is 4th of july and new year’s eve combined-- packaged in a berry!

a prime nigra mulb is similar in taste to a prime blackberry but at least twice the sweet-sour intensity and twice its wine-like flavor profile.


In my mind, too many Morus nigra promoters.


I’m a fan of the other species too, actually all I ever had, and nigra can only be grown with protection here, so having a large tree is out of the question. Now if I could make a hybrid, but i doubt it is possible because I think we have a ploidy level mis-match.I’m still going to try if I get a male nigra.

Mulberry trees are also very useful to keep birds away. they love mulberries over just about anything else, and I have heard where they didn’t even bother with the blueberries as the mulberries were in season. A mature tree has enough for people and birds. One of the few fruits you can say that about.

I’m growing Shangri La an M. Alba and what a beautiful plant. Large leaves that are striking. It really stands out. This is an alba that is not that hardy here, so it goes in the garage with the figs. I will have to grow in container.


I, too, believed that a nigra hybrid was an impossibility, but there is this nurseryman in Belgium that claims he has crossed Morus nigra pollen with a female Pakistan (Morus macroura). He is attempting to get it registered and a university is doing chromosome counting of culture grown root tip. I am anxious for the results…Will it be 168 chromosomes (154 from nigra plus 14 from macroura) or something different. The plant from the Pakistan looks very nigra. He has been unsuccessful in crossing nigra with alba, though.
Of course, it probably won’t help you at all…if anything the hybrid may be less cold tolerant. But it may be a blessing for those of us in the humid southeast, since Morus macroura is very disease resistant.


Gerardi is quite different, so hoping that may work?


you know what @Richard? thanks to recurrent detractors like you-- it resulted in an overstoc at nurseries here of nigras with plenty fruiting laterals. So got them for half-price.

so below am posting several 8-9 ft tall tree-rose type nigra mulbs just planted to brighten up your day. Enjoy!



So those are yours now? Quite the trees…

One of my nigras is grafted high up the stem also. I don’t like that much but had no choice. Now I try to budgraft lower into the stem. But thats not as easy expected. I did some bud grafts in september last year. That was probably too late. None of them took. The cuts did not even start to callous. I will try again in about a month or so, since my trees are absolutely dormant still.


it might be a ploy by nurseries to market nigras as ‘large trees’. Since albas can grow 8 feet in a year or two, they decapitate them and graft over with nigras high up. Below is a 5 yr old nigra that was obviously grafted low to a seedling alba. Would be difficult to sell this for 100$, even though the fruiting stems are just about the same in number and volume as those on the ‘trees’, and would say each’s scion would be of the same age(from time of grafting).

on the other hand, grafting high helps one’s lumbar spine and access to berries, because berries are borne neath the leaves, so easier to see from below.


I’m sure you are right. But for me I will try to get nigras on their own roots since I live in a borderline climate for morus nigra (7a). So I have to count in winter damage to my trees from year to year. Plans are to graft them low onto morus alba, let them grow out for a season and then to plant them deep with the graft union burried.


that’s an interesting approach. I may have inadvertently stuffed with soil/ compost the base of the bush-nigra i just posted above, so hopefully it will root from the scion as well.

will keep you posted, and you do the same with your trials :slightly_smiling_face:


Will do, thank you.

In an article I read about an interesting method to “force” own roots on the variety used by a grower. He did the same what I plan to do but additionally put a ring of copper wire around the base of the tree right above the graft union. Then he planted the whole thing deep. The copper wire would then over time girdle the tree stunting the rootstock and forcing own roots above the girdle. Will try that too.