Tuesday, November 10, 2015

Paper Mulberry in VanDusen Gardens

Moraceae broussonetia papyrifera, the paper mulberry, is a useful as well as a beautiful tree.

While admiring it in the gardens, we learned that in Japan and China, its bark has traditionally been used to make paper and cloth.

But its virtues do not end there. The fruit, stems and sap are useful in treating sore eyes, coughs and bleeding. These plant parts also have a diuretic effect. The heavy latex-like sap the plant produces may be applied to the skin to relieve insect bites and neurodermatitis.

It is sometimes called the deer's tree, as these animals feed on its tender shoots. Native to Australia, this tree now grows in East Africa and elsewhere.

Most of the leaves from this tree had turned  yellow and fallen, but the picture on the right, from eattheweeds, shows their shape and what they look like when they're green.

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