Mulberry (പട്ടുനൂൽപുഴുചെടി)

Scientific Name:Morus alba L.

Synonyms:Morus alba f. alba ,
 Morus alba var. atropurpurea (Roxb.) Bureau

Systematic Position
Class: Dicotylodonae
Family: Moraceae

Common Names
White Mulberry
Kambli chedi
Hindi: Shahtoot

Description: A small to medium tree growing up to 15 m, M. alba has a short trunk, and a rounded crown with a dense canopy of spreading branches. Leaves are alternate, simple, 6-18 cm long, 5-13 cm wide, broadly ovate, dentate or lobed with 3 prominent veins running from the rounded or obliquely cordate base. Somewhat polymorphic, leaves are shiny green on the adaxial surface, paler and slightly hairy underneath. Bark is light brown to grey, smooth but may be furrowed. Dioecious, male inflorescences are small with 4 stamens, filaments inflexed in bud, green and borne on long catkins. Female flowers are inconspicuous, perianth with 4 free or almost free segments, aggregated in short spikes. Fruit is an ovoid or cylindrical syncarp composed of achenes, pendunculate, red when immature, blackish-purple, purple or greenish-white when mature, 1-2.5 cm long

Habitat: Widely cultivated and naturalized elsewhere across the world, largely due to sericulture.   

Distribution: M. alba is native to central and eastern China

Uses:  Animal feed, invertebrate food for silkworm, agroforestry, windbreak, charcoal, ornamental, honey flora, source of medicine, fibre, gum , resin, timber