Morus alba L.

Last updated: 27 Jul 2015

Scientific Name

Morus alba L.


Morus atropurpurea Roxb., Morus chinensis Lodd. ex Loudon, Morus intermedia Perr., Morus latifolia Poir., Morus multicaulis (Perr.) Perr. [1]

Vernacular Name

Malaysia Tut, bebesaran, besaram, kayu besar [2]
English White mulberry [2][3], Mongolia mulberry, mulberry, silkworm mulberry, white-fruited mulberry, white mulberry tree [4]
China Chi sang, lu sang, pai sang, sanh, sang bai pi, sang seng, sang ye [4]
India Bau khamba, hippu naerale, kambilipuch, poochi chedi, pattunulppuluccetti, shahtoot, reshmicettu, thingtheihmu, tutri, uppunute [4]
Indonesia Murbei (General); besaran (Javanese) [3]; besaran, lempaung [4]
Thailand Mon [2]
Philippines Amoras (Filipino); amingit (lgorot); mora (Ibanag) [2]; balbali [4]
Cambodia Mon [3]
Myanmar Labri; mawon; ngap-set-ting; posa [4]
Vietnam D[aajlu t[aaf]m, tang [3]
Nepal Kumu, kimbu kaphal [4]
Japan Kuwa, yama-guwa (mountain Morus) [4]
South Africa Moerbei [4]
Tanzania Mlobe [4]
France Murier blanc [3]
Spain Moral blanco, morera blanca [3]
Hawaii Kilika [4].

Geographical Distributions

Morus alba is native to China, now widely culti­vated in temperate and tropical regions. It is occasionally naturalised in Malesia such as in the Philippines (Batan Island and Cagayan Province) where it was introduced in 1780. [3]

Botanical Description

M. alba is a member of the Moracea family. It is a small to medium-sized tree that can reach up to 15(-20) m tall. [3]

Its bole is up to 70 cm in diametre. The bark surface is dark grey-brown and with horizontal lenticels. [3]

The leaves are ovate to broadly ovate, measuring 5-16 cm x 4-12 cm, rounded to shallowly cordate at the base, acute to acuminate at apex, pubescent on the main veins and with slender petiole 1-3.5 cm long. The male spikes are 1-1.5(-2) cm long while the female spikes are 0.5-1.3 cm long and ovoid. [3]

The syncarp is ovoid and measures 1.5-2.5 cm long. [3]


M. alba can be cultivated at 0-3500 m altitude, but in the humid tropics, it does not produce good fruit when planted at sea ­level. [3]

Chemical Constituent

No documentation

Plant Part Used

No documentation

Traditional Use

No documentation

Preclinical Data

No documentation

Clinical Data

No documentation


No documentation

Poisonous Management

No documentation

Line drawing



Figure 1: The line drawing of M. alba [3]


  1. The Plant List. Ver 1.1 Morus alba L. [homepage on the Internet]. c2013 [update 2012 Apr 18; cited on 2015 Jul 27]. Available from:
  2. Herbal Medicine Research Centre, Institute for Medical Research. Compendium of medicinal plants used in Malaysia. Volume 2. Kuala Lumpur: HMRC IMR; 2002. p.152.
  3. Alonzo DS. Morus alba L. In: de Padua LS, Bunyapraphatsara N, Lemmens RHMJ, editors. Plant Resources of South-East Asia No. 12(1): Medicinal and poisonous plants 1. Leiden, Netherlands: Backhuys Publisher, 1999; p. 362-363
  4. Quattrocchi U. CRC world dictionary of medicinal and poisonous plants: Common names, scientific names, eponyms, synonyms, and etymology. Volume IV M-Q. Boca Raton, Florida: CRC Press; 2012. p.200-201.