Mulberry (Morus spp./Moraceae)contains 10 species that grow in North America (2), Central and South America (4) and from Africa to Asia (5). All species look alike microscopically, although the heartwood of M. rubra turns a dark mahogany red over time. The only native US species are Red Mulberry (Morus rubra) and Texas Mulberry (Morus microphylla).
Red Mulberry (Morus rubra), is widespread in Eastern United States. It’s range extends from Massachusetts and southern Vermont west through the southern half of New York
to extreme southern Ontario, southern Michigan, central Wisconsin
and southeastern Minnesota; south to Iowa, southeastern Nebraska,
central Kansas, western Oklahoma and central Texas; and east to
southern Florida. A rapid grower, red mulberry favors valleys,
flood plains, and low moist hillsides. The wood is of little commercial
importance but is used locally for fence posts because of the
durability of its heartwood. Other uses of the wood include farm
implements, cooperage, furniture, interior finish, and caskets
(Martin, Alexander C., Herbert S. Zim, and Arnold L. Nelson. 1961.
Mulberry family: Moraceae. In American wildlife and plants. p.
313-314. Dover Publications, New York).
Characteristics found in the Mulberry
- Ring porous
- Coalesced/Confluent parenchyma
- Spirals in vessels
- Simple perforations
- I/V pits medium (8-12)
- Rays 5-8 seriate & homocellular
- Crystals in rays and axial parenchyma
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