I recently pruned our mulberry mini-tree – so called because it’s rooted in the ground and has grown rather big. The main stem of the plant is easily almost 10cm (2-3 inches) in diameter, and some of the stems are showing the same tendencies towards girth. Since I don’t want the plant to grow into a big tree, I chopped off a lot of it, especially the long branches (yes, they’re worthy of the term “branches”). In doing this, I inadvertently removed a few clusters of ladybug eggs, and a couple of new fruits (note to self: check leaves thoroughly before pruning, especially if the plant looks like it’s thriving).
And since I absolutely detest wasting good growing material – and because I want to have more mulberries to harvest – I kept most of the woody stems for cuttings, while the leaves and softer stems went to the compost heap (they break down fast and are good for composting).
I don’t know if it’s just my hope, but I kept most of those cuttings rather long, at over half a metre in length. I say “hope” because I reckon long cuttings will have more new stems, which will give us bushy plants with more fruits. After all, there are bud nodes every 3cm or so, and each cutting has already sprouted one or more new stems.
There must be a lot of energy stored in those thick cuttings, because several of the new stems are bearing little fruits as well! I don’t expect them to grow to full term because most of the cuttings don’t have roots yet, but it’s still amusing to see those tiny mulberries coming out.
The cuttings are sitting in a bit of water until I have the time to plant them. I will plant them. I will.