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Black Mulberry Trees

 

Planting

Black Mulberries will thrive in most normal garden soils in full sun or partial shade. Avoid frost pockets.

Plant your trees as soon as possible after receipt, allowing sufficient space for them to grow. Trees will grow to approximately 4m (13ft) in height and spread after 10 years.

Should weather conditions be adverse (i.e. if the ground is frozen or too wet to plant), then the trees should be temporarily heeled in until conditions improve. Dig a hole or shallow trench, lay the trees at an oblique angle and cover the roots loosely with sufficient soil or compost so that no roots are exposed to the air.

Improve the soil structure by thorough digging before planting, ideally to a depth of about 45cm (18in) - two spades deep. Mix in plenty of well-rotted manure or compost.

Soak the root system in water for 1-2 hours. Dig a hole comfortably large enough to take the root system (so the roots can be evenly spread out), ensuring the top of the root system is level with the surrounding soil or up to 2.5cm (1in) deeper.
Apply rootgrow™ mycorrhizal fungi directly to the roots before planting - this will help the tree to establish quickly. Tread firmly and water-in thoroughly. Stake the tree and secure with tree ties to prevent rocking whilst the roots establish.

 

Watering

Keep the soil around the tree moist throughout the first growing season. In later years only water during prolonged dry spells, drenching thoroughly no more than once a week.

 

Weeding & Mulching

Keep the area around the tree free of weeds, particularly during the first year. An annual mulch of well rotted compost will greatly improve moisture retention and soil structure, and help suppress unwanted weeds.

 

Pruning

Prune back the leading shoot at planting time to the height at which you want the head to form. Over the next two winters cut back all shoots to form a balanced ‘bush’ framework. In later years prune remove any crossing or tangled branches, keeping the centre of your tree open to sun and air.

 

Feeding

Most garden soils contain sufficient nutrients for a tree to grow healthily, though a top-dressing of a balanced fertilizer (such as Fruit Feed) in the spring can be beneficial.

 

Pests & Diseases

Black mulberry trees are generally trouble free.

 

Further Information

For further information refer to RHS Growing Fruit by Harry Baker. Useful information can also be found on the RHS website.

 

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