A part of the Morus family, there are 2 main types of mulberry - white and black. Mulberry trees can grow up to 20 metres high, yielding sweet and delicate berries looking a bit like raspberries.
Since ancient times, mulberry trees were grown in China to cultivate and feed silkworms on their leaves. The trees traditionally were therefore common in the silk producing countries - China, Japan, Korea, entering eventually Central Asian countries particularly Uzbekistan, Tajikistan, Azerbaijan.
Although the berries can be white and black, it is the bark that determines the type of tree (white mulberry or black mulberry). The leaves of white mulberry trees are valued much more as a food for silkworms rather then black mulberry leaves.
There is a beautiful legend of how the mulberry was discovered. Empress Lei Zu, wife of the Yellow Emperor was having tea under a mulberry tree, when a small cocoon fell into her teacup. She saw it spreading in the hot water into delicate iridescent threads, future precious material for making silk.
Mulberry wood or “tut” amulets were used widely in Persia, Afghanistan, and Tajikistan to protect women and babies from evil. Families had at least one mulberry tree in the garden to gather for dinners or tea.
Besides being a delicious and sweet treat in the form of its juicy berries, the mulberry has been a valuable ingredient for natural medicine in China, Japan, Tibet, India and Vietnam. Its berries, leaves, bark and roots were all utilized to make decoctions for diabetes, kidney dysfunction, heart conditions, anaemia, and gastrointestinal disorders.
The berries have strong diuretic properties, helping to balance the metabolism, lose weight and normalize appetite.
In the natural healing systems of the Caucasus region mulberries are used for treating coughs and colds, while a bark infusion is used to expel parasites.
Mulberry wood is extremely hard and durable, similar to oak wood. It is often used for making furniture and musical instruments.
The berries, roots, and bark of mulberry are all ingredients for healthy and glowing skin.
Mulberry root not only stimulates collagen production, but it also has a strong brightening effect, lightening sun and age spots. Moreover, the root extract has a strong anti-inflammatory effect on skin, healing and calming irritations.
Mulberries are full of nutrients for dull and tired skin including: organic acids, vitamins, carotenoids, flavonoids, and pectins. They hydrate skin and protect from UV damage. Mulberries extract is safe and beneficial for eye care too, as it helps to lighten dark circles.
Generally mulberries are safe, but should be taken with caution by people with diabetes.
Try one of our Summer Menu treatments that features mulberry to experience its brightening and hydrating effect – Mulberry & Pearl Extract with Camellia Seed Oil.