How to prune fruitless mulberry tree is a worrying notion that most gardeners would think about. Although it may be challenging, unless you know this easy method, you may become frustrated when it comes to pruning mulberry trees of the Moraceae family.Prune Fruitless Mulberry Tree

Fortunately, we are here to help you simplify this activity. So continue reading to know how to give a clean look back again to this beautiful growing tree when it doesn’t have fruit yet.

How To Prune a Fruitless Mulberry Tree the Right Way?

To prune a fruitless mulberry tree the right way, you must gather the necessary tools, and identify the branches to prune. Then, remove the dead, diseased, and damaged branches, crossed or rubbing ones, water sprouts, and suckers. Cut the weak or spindly ones, and shape the tree.

1. Gather the Necessary Tools

Before starting the pruning activity, you’ll need to prepare all the tools that are essential to the work. These include hand pruners, loppers, pruning saws, safety goggles, and gloves. Bring a ladder as well to reach tall mulberry trees. You may also want to bring a cleaning cloth with a sanitizing or sterilizing solution.

Make sure that the tools are clean and sharp, so having your tools in this condition ensures clean cuts and the prevention of pests and diseases. Hand pruners are small handheld cutting tools, as these are used for pruning small branches and stems. Loppers, on the other hand, are larger cutting tools for trimming larger branches, together with this a pruning saw is used to trim thick branches that cannot be removed with hand pruners or loppers.

Ensure that you are wearing proper goggles to protect the eyes from flying debris during pruning. Wearing gloves will protect the hands from cuts, scrapes, and scratches. Finally, a ladder may be needed if the tree has grown too tall for you to reach. Your sanitizing solution can be pure alcohol or a mixed solution of one part bleach to nine parts water.

Before starting, inspect your tools, especially the pruners, loppers, and pruning saws; you should ensure they are clean and sharp because dirty tools can easily spread pests and diseases.

Dull tools, on the other hand, will damage the tree and make pruning more difficult, so sharpening them, like your scissors, is a great choice. By ensuring your tools are clean and sharp, you can make the entire process easier while keeping your tree healthy.

2. Identify the Branches to Be Pruned

There are several types of branches that need to be identified and pruned. To begin with, you must try to inspect the dead or diseased branches and remove them immediately, and together with this, the branches that are no longer alive may attract pests or become infected with diseased ones.Identify the Branches to Be Pruned

Similarly, diseased branches need to be pruned to prevent the spread to other parts of the tree.

Crossed or rubbing branches also need to be removed. Having branches that cross or rub against each other can damage their barks. This can result in branch wounds that are vulnerable to infections, so you should also make sure that you tackle the water sprouts, bcause they are vigorous when they are growing upright.

Moreover, the water sprouts can grow from the trunk or your mulberry tree’s branches. When left alone, they can sap energy from the tree. Additionally, water sprouts can create a cluttered and unappealing look for the tree.

Suckers often grow from the base of the tree and usually from the roots. Similar to water sprouts, they can easily sap energy from the tree and leave it looking unsightly and unhealthy. In this case, the weak or spindly branches also have to be removed, so you can prune small, thin, or deformed branches that are not growing well.

Finally, branches that interfere with existing structures or wires need to be removed. These include branches that are growing too close to buildings, power lines, and other physical structures. Doing so will prevent accidents and safety hazards.

3. Remove the Dead, Diseased, or Damaged Branches

The first branches to be removed are the dead, diseased, or damaged ones. You can easily spot them by their lack of foliage, unusual discoloration, and cracks or splits in the bark, and that will be the right way to go through them because when you get them out of the picture, it will make the tree look more vibrant.

You will need to use hand pruners or a pruning saw to remove these, and you must ensure that you are making a clean cut as close to the collar, which is swollen base of the branch, as possible. This will help minimize the size of the wound while promoting faster healing, and now the new shoots will have better space to grow.

After each cut, wipe off your pruning shears or saw with some of the sanitizing or sterilizing solutions. This will prevent any pests and diseases from spreading to other branches and just to be safe in the long run rather than harming the plant.

4. Remove Crossed or Rubbing Branches

Prune these off, as they can make your mulberry tree weak. When picking which of the crossed or rubbing branches to remove, select the weaker one; note that when you issue these, the tree will be growing in more of a liberal manner than before.Remove Crossed or Rubbing Branches

This can be easily identified due to its lack of structural contribution to your fruitless mulberry growing healthily. So now, you can go ahead and cut the weaker branch as close to the collar as possible, and you will see how the tree will thrive.

5. Remove Water Sprouts and Suckers

Next, you’ll want to remove your mulberry tree’s identified water sprouts and suckers. If you allow them to grow, these will take away valuable energy and nutrients from the tree. Use your pruners or loppers to make clean cuts as close to the collar as possible, but remember that you must always, clean and sanitize your tools after each cut so that it stays healthy.

6. Prune Weak or Spindly Branches

Similar to the other branches, weak or spindly ones will hamper the growth of mulberry trees. To ensure that your tree retains its health and maintains its attractive shape, prune weak and spindly branches from the tree with pruners or loppers.

This will ensure that your beautiful tree can focus more energy on healthy branches, and in the growing time, you will see how propserous it will be. At the same time, the tree will produce healthier leaves and better fruits.

7. Shape Your Mulberry Tree

Once all the problematic branches have been removed, you can start shaping your mulberry trees. You can use hand pruners or loppers for this job. Use a safety ladder to access those hard-to-reach areas if the tree is too tall, this will help you in giving it a clean finish in the long run.Shape Your Mulberry Tree

Shape the tree into your desired shape, so you must be keen that you do not remove too much of the foliage because this matter can stress the tree and affect its growth. Consider its natural growth pattern and try to preserve the overall structure of your fruitless mulberry tree.

After everything is done, clean up the area around the tree and make sure it looks neat. You must also gather all branches and debris before disposing of them properly because this is an important factor that will reduce or prevent the spread of pests and diseases.


Taking care of a mulberry tree is easier now that you know how. Here’s a quick recap:

  • Removing unwanted and problematic branches from your fruitless mulberry is best to keep it healthy.
  • Pruning young mulberry trees can be done as long as it is not too severe.
  • Prune regularly as this is how to keep a mulberry tree small.

And if you’re still asking yourself, “Should I cut down my mulberry tree?”, the answer is no. By pruning it regularly, you can keep it healthy and fruitful during the growing season!

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