Why isn't my Mulberry tree fruiting?

monsoon99(Z9 CA)March 8, 2013

I bought a Black Beauty Persian Mulberry tree 3 years ago. It was a good size when purchased (3 feet tall) Every year it puts out lots of leaves starting in June or so and then nothing. I dread that it is a male tree. Anyway I can find out if it is male or female or does it fruit after many years. I would hate to pull it out after so many years of loving care.

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maybe its too young? Not enough light, phosphorous, or other nutirents?? You said it is 3ft, thats a bit young afor a tree to be fruiting.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2013 at 7:48PM
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Has it flowered yet? If not, patience.

Second, any fruit tree tag will tell you whether this var is self-fertile or needs a pollinator (hard to tell sometimes with all the grafting going on).

The briefest Googles shows that this var is self-fertile, plus, it is common in cities to have pollinators close by anyway.

So as it is self-fertile, you have to wait until the plant reaches sexual maturity. I would also scrutinize whether your loving care translates to a fertilization regime that makes the plant sad & refuses to flower. Just a thought.

    Bookmark   March 8, 2013 at 8:21PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

dano said: I would also scrutinize whether your loving care translates to a fertilization regime that makes the plant sad & refuses to flower. Just a thought.

==>> and that was my first thought ... loving it thru a fert balanced in the wrong direction for fruit .. rather than a lot of greenery ...

but if you dont fert.. then its simply age ...

3 foot is NOT a rather 'good size' tree ... mine is about 40 feet tall ...

frankly.. patience is your only remedy.. is far as i am concerned..

a fruit will fruit.. when it wants to fruit.. and not a second sooner ...

fruiting is a function of sexual maturity .... and just like the average teenager.. it happens.. when it happens .. and there is nothing you can do.. to speed it up.. or slow it down ...

so, for example.. i dont see how you could fert a 12 year old to maturity faster.. by feeding him.. and would analogize to a tree ...

i dont care where you post.. but there is a fruit forum.. and they do things much differently than tree peeps do.. so you MIGHT get a different answer there.. or find someone who actually grows mulberry for fruit ... mine came with the house.. and were bird planted.. just like the hundreds i kill every year .... as i said. IMHO.. they dont need much of anything to grow... lol .. much to my dismay ....


    Bookmark   March 9, 2013 at 8:11AM
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monsoon99(Z9 CA)

My fertilizing regimen is not vigorous so I am not worried about too much of that. The tag says it is self pollinating Persian Black Beauty mulberry tree. It is also a dwarf - tag says will grow up to 15 feet tall. I did some further research after my post and it appear I have to wait for a few years before it fruits. I also read that male mulberrys do not fruit and was worried that mine was a male. I hope the tag is right. I just wish I could know with more certainty how much longer I have to wait before it fruits.

    Bookmark   March 10, 2013 at 6:39PM
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There should be no worries about it being a male tree if you bought it.

What you bought isn't a tree that was grown from seed, what you bought is a limb from an existing tree that was grafted onto rootstock. Just look down around the base and you should see the scar.

Now, before you start thinking you got ripped off or something, this is common practice, perfectly acceptable, and it will grow into a normal tree in time. It also means that it was taken off of a female tree that produced suitable fruit, and so will it.

It should start bearing fruit in 2-3 years after you bought it. In the mean time it has to establish sufficient roots (that usually takes at least a year) and then bulk up the upper portion (another year or two) before it can support fruit.

Basically when it stops looking like a stick and looks like a tree, it should start bearing fruit.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 10:32AM
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Needs treatment with a product known as 'Time'. Apply about 5-10 years of the product at a steady rate.


    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 1:50PM
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monsoon99(Z9 CA)

Thank you Edyminion. Based on the information you gave, I feel much more confident that my tree will fruit at some point. As you see from these posts the estimates range wildly between 2-3 years and 5-10 years. I hope sooner than later....

Thanks everyone.

    Bookmark   March 12, 2013 at 8:33PM
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Yeah, the time differences are mostly due to the differences in how the tree starts.

From a seedling, its 5-10 years before they bear fruit, as it takes that long to go from seed to suitably large tree. When you get a grafted branch from the store, its already the size of a tree thats been growing for several years, so it had a head start.

I have a fruiting mulberry in my front yard I planted several years ago, and it had fruit last year. Off the top of my head I'd say its in the 10-15 foot range right now, and was maybe 3-4 feet when I bought it. They grow fairly fast.

    Bookmark   March 13, 2013 at 1:24PM
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I have a large Pakistan mulberry tree in my front yard, 3 1/2 years ago and still not fruiting
It's about 10 feet tall and 10 feet wide
It flowers in February or March and then only leaves, no fruits
I was thinking to either graft it of remove it
Does anyone have an idea why?

This post was edited by yammine on Sun, May 11, 14 at 18:58

    Bookmark   May 11, 2014 at 6:56PM
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ken_adrian Adrian MI cold Z5

yammine ... your ??? questions was answered above.. more than once ...

fruiting is sexual maturity .. and it can take 5 to 10 years ...

starting over will not speed the process ...


    Bookmark   May 12, 2014 at 7:24AM
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ilovegardening(10a San Gabriel Valley of L.A.)

Just throwing in my $0.02 here: I have more mulberry trees than I can count on my property--they self-sow like crazy. But it's only the trees that are >15' tall that are fruiting; the rest have leaves but no fruit--yet. This includes several that are between 5' and 10' tall. So I would deduce that in mulberry land, trees have to be GOOD SIZED before they fruit--and 3 or 4 feet doesn't count.

    Bookmark   May 13, 2014 at 1:39PM
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i have the same problem with my black beauty mulberry: 2 years of age and about 3 feet tall, and presumably like monsoon's, i got it from burntridgenursery.com
mine actually fruits every year, as soon as it buds in spring. But the fruits don't go past the red color, and drops before they turn purple. As everyone had indicated here, quite likely too young to bear fruits to maturity. It only had heart-shaped leaves in 2013, in 2014, it developed the three-lobed leaves typical of figs and jackfruit trees, so i presume this new development indicates it has reached puberty, and hopefully, adulthood. I also have a couple of noir of spain black mulberries, and they too are doing the same exact things as the black beauties, bearing fruits, but subject to fruit-drop before turning purple.
however, there are two varieties of mulberries which will produce fruits to maturity on the same year they have been planted, and at really tiny sizes.
our pakistani mulberry actually produced mature fruits on its first year of being planted, at nothing more than a couple of feet tall, and just a spindly scrawny little stem, which even endured having its leaves stripped by the neighborhood kids. Since i don't fertilize any of my mulberries, quite likely that yammine's may have been getting extra doses of nitrogen, encouraging growth, but might inhibit fruiting.
the dwarf gerardi mulberry is even more precocious, and will bear huge berries at almost every node of its 9" stem, just a couple of month after i unpacked it from the fedex box.

dwarf gerardi's have very short internodes.
.i am growing them in las vegas, so it could be the relatively high temps we have during spring which influence such 'behaviors'

    Bookmark   January 29, 2015 at 8:59PM
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My Illinois Everbearing produced about ten ripe mulberries just a couple of months after I planted it last year, it was a 4 foot tall stick. Here in colorado where spring comes late. It didn't grow many branches/leaves but enough to fruit I guess.

    Bookmark   January 29, 2015 at 10:45PM
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thanks for that tip olreader.
so there are three varieties of mulberries which will bear fruits even when still tiny and just recently planted:
1) illinois everbearing
2) gerardi dwarf
3) pakistani

    Bookmark   January 30, 2015 at 10:24PM
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