Urban feral mulberry hunting 2024, 30 new trees taste tested. 4 winners found

Every mulberry season I love riding around town where I live in my power wheelchair looking for feral bird planted fruiting mulberry trees trying to find something special. This year I found 30 new trees loaded with fruit. I’m not interested in finding human planted trees although I’ve never found a mulberry tree that was planted by people.

After taste testing the 30 trees some were good, but 4 of them were great and the very best 1 was absolutely mind blowingly delicious!!! it tastes like the best most intense black raspberry that you’ve ever had they literally melt in your mouth a perfect intense balance of sweet and tart. The fruit is long and skinny with small druplets. I think its a Alba x Rubra hybrid leaning more Rubra. while the other 3 winners have large fat berries with large druplets leaning more Alba. All 4 trees were absolutely loaded with fruit

I’m in zone 6b

1st winner
(This is by far the best tree it’s shocking how good it is. I have air layers set on it)



(2nd best tree )


IMG_6943

(3rd best tree)



(4th best tree)



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That sounds like a keeper! Big berries and awesome flavor, that checks 2 of the boxes, is it fairly productive too?
I might bump you back this winter for a few cuttings :slight_smile:

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I found an alba near my office that had berries similar to the Hiser Lane tree. They were delicious! I actually preferred their taste over the few Black Beauty berries I was able to beat the birds to.

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@treefrog1 its super productive. It was absolutely loaded with ripe fruit. Its been putting out loads of ripe fruit for 3 weeks and is still loaded an ripening fruit. Im monitoring it to see how long it produces ripe fruit. I think it will be a 4 or 5 week harvesting window but we will see. I have air layers on it if they dont take ill graft it.

@jeremybyington Mulberries really are great. The birds do really love them

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Your VA mulberries look very similar size and shape wise… to my 3 year old gerardi mulberries. A little on the slim side rather than plump.

Sounds like you have mulberries around your place… like I have persimmons here.

Congratulations on the hunt and good finds.

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@TNHunter thank you. How well do you like Gerardi?
im thinking about trying it here but wasnt sure about cold hardiness. I also love hunting for persimmons there arent many trees in town but ive found a few old ones hidden around. Your grafts are looking great this year!

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@Fishinjunky … Gerardi is one worth having… because it is so easy… with minimal late winter pruning… I can keep mine around 8 ft tall.

It makes a lot of nice berries for a small size tree.

Year 1… berries were not impressive… year 2 were better… nice fruity flavor and sweetness…

Now in year 3… the flavor has improved even more… a more complex fruity flavor and nice sweetness… they have been improving flavor wise and not sure they are finished yet.

Where they are at now… I am very happy with them… glad I have it.

I also have silk hope in year 2… and Oscar in year 1… and recently grafted lawson dawson and kip parker…

I have eaten a few year 2 silk hope… and they were very good… i am sure they will be even better next year.

I hear that Oscar taste more like a nice sweet tart blackberry… and cant wait to try that one.

In a few years should have an abundance of mulberries and persimmons around here.

Good luck to you.

TNHunter

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Gerardi seems to be very cold hardy, at least zone 5 hardy, so it should pose no problems for you at all.

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That winning mulberry sounds amazing! I would love to buy some cuttings from you or trade for any of the cultivars I have.

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Those are some big mulberries. The ones on the farm are much smaller. My wwife is a big fan of them and likes the idea of grafting over. I scouted and sampled the different ones there, but I haven found anything notable. Besides American cranberry viburnum and elderberries.