Morus mesozygia (African
mulberry, Tongaland mulberry)
Afrika-moerbei [Afrikaans]; umDuli [Zulu]
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Charophyta > Streptophytina > Plantae (land plants)
> Tracheophyta (vascular plants) > Euphyllophyta > Lignophyta (woody plants)
> Spermatophyta (seed plants) > Angiospermae (flowering
plants) > Eudicotyledons > Core Eudicots > Rosids >
Eurosid I > Order: Rosales > Family: Moraceae
> Genus: Morus
- Grows into a large tree, up to 20-30 m in height.
- Leaves are alternate, simple, ovate, with serrated margin
and distinctly 3-veined at base. Look similar to those of
cultivated mulberries but are larger.
- Bark is light grey to brown, mottled and with fissures.
- The creamy-white to yellowish flowers are unisexual - some
trees have both sexes of flowers, others have only one sex
- Fruit are similar-looking to those of the cultivated
mulberry, but smaller.
Distribution and habitat
A tropical African species that within southern
Africa is native to Mozambique and northern KwaZulu-Natal. It occurs
as a canopy tree in coastal and inland forests.
No records that are specific to this species,
other than that the fruit are eaten by birds (Palmer & Pitman 1972).
See under Morus
for general ecological interactions for the genus - these probably
apply mainly to domesticated mulberries.
- The fruit are eaten.
- The wood is hard and regarded as good-looking with
light-coloured sapwood and darker yellow-brown heartwood. No
information on how, and to what extent, it is used by people.
- Palgrave, K.C. and Palgrave, M.C. 2002. Trees of Southern Africa. 3rd
Edition. Struik Publishers, Cape Town.
- Palmer, E. and Pitman, N. 1972. Trees of Southern Africa covering all
known indigenous species in the Republic of South Africa, South-West Africa,
Botswana, Lesotho and Swaziland. Volume 1. A.A. Balkema, Cape