Congratulations on the purchase of your Cherry Tree. With its heavenly blooms and an abundance of delicious Cherries, this variety is quite possibly the most beautiful fruit bearing tree you can plant in your garden or landscape.
Location: Choose a sunny spot that will give your Cherry Tree a minimum of 6 hours of direct sunlight per day. Although it will thrive in almost any kind of soil, avoid locations where the soil will remain soggy for prolonged lengths of time.
1. Dig a hole approximately a foot and a half deep and equally as wide.
2. Place the roots in the hole and fill the hole about half-way with soil, tamp to remove air pockets then fill the hole completely.
3. Water to secure the tree and remove any additional air pockets in the soil.
4. Add more soil if necessary after settling.
5. Spread a layer of mulch over the soil around your Cherry Tree to help encourage healthy growth and protect your tree.
Watering: During the first year, water your Cherry Tree every second week. If the tree receives an inch of rain over that time no additional watering is necessary.
Pruning: A year after planting your Cherry Tree, prune your tree in the winter. Shape the tree to encourage horizontal branch growth with space between branches. Prune once a year as necessary to remove weak, drooping branches. These are usually poor fruit bearing branches and removing them will encourage positive air flow and healthy growth. Also make sure light can penetrate the center of the canopy.
Fertilization: Good, nutrient rich soil should only require the addition of nitrogen. Fertilize using nitrogen fertilizer twice annually applying 2 weeks after planting and 4 weeks after the first application. Use a complete fertilizer such as 10-10-10 and apply at the rate of 0.05 pounds of actual nitrogen per dose. Fertilizer application ratios vary upon the formulation so be sure to follow package directions. When applying, be sure fertilizer is 6 to 8 inches away from the trunk around the tree to prevent the roots from burning. Organic fertilizers such as manure or blood meal are highly discouraged as their nitrogen levels cannot be measured. Keep in mind that Cherry Trees require high levels of nitrogen early in the season and lower levels during the late summer.
Pests: Cherry Trees can be susceptible to Brown Rot. The best prevention for this problem is proper pruning to provide good air circulation. Be sure there is ample room between branches. Remove any infected blossoms, fruit or leaves and inspect your tree continuously to catch any early signs of the disease. To spot Brown Rot, look for brown, soggy flowers or mummified looking fruit on your tree. For control once the disease is recognized, use a sulfur spray 4 times: when flower buds are pink, when flowers are open, right after petal fall, and 2 weeks after petal fall.
● Surround your Cherry Tree with a thin layer of mulch each spring.
● In colder climates, avoid fertilizing after midsummer to prevent new growth that won’t harden before fall frosts.
● Prevent animals such as rabbits from damaging your tree by placing a circular wire about a foot high around the base of the tree especially during winter.
● To avoid root injury, place fertilizer in a band 6 to 8 inches from the trunk around the tree. Organic forms of fertilizer (manure, blood meal or bone meal) are not recommended due to the element analysis being unavailable and that those nutrients may be released throughout the season.