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White Mulberry

Common name for a short-lived, fast-growing shrub or medium-sized mulberry tree in the family Moraceae, and with the botanical name Morus alba. It is native to China, but is also widely cultivated elsewhere, especially for its leaves (fig.), which are the preferred foodstuff for silkworms, i.e. the larvae (fig.) of the Domesticated Silkmoth (Bombyx mori - fig.), which in turn are employed in the commercial production of silk. It bears edible berries that are white to pink and red in colour, to deep purple in species found in the wild. This shrub or tree is notable for having the fastest known movement in the plant kingdom, which is produced when the plant discharges pollen from its catkins. This happens with the incredible speed of 560 kilometers per hour, and is caused by the stamens that act as catapults when stored elastic energy is released.