Bing cherries have always been my favorite, but I’m sure the cherry-pie makers out there prefer the sour varieties instead. I’ve never actually been very fond of cherry pie. I do love seeing the cherry trees in bloom, no matter what kind they are. Here are 5 tips on growing cherry trees.
Cherry trees have a specific type of climate they like more than others. The summers can’t be long and hot and they still need a cold period during the year to rest up for the spring time. These trees also don’t need a hard frost for their fruit to be ready to pick. If this sounds like your climate, then you should have no problem planting cherry trees in your yard.
4. Prepare for Planting
Choose a spot well before purchasing your cherry tree. Test the pH of the soil; it should be around 6.2 to 6.8. The soil also needs to be well-drained, since cherry trees don’t like hanging out in puddles. Dig a hole where the tree will go. Monitor the water in the hole next time it rains. If the water stays in the hole for a long period of time, then the soil isn’t well-drained and you’ll need to pick a new location.
3. Make Sure You Have Enough Trees
As the rule goes, sour cherries tend to be self-pollinating, so you only need one cherry tree to get fruit. However, sweet cherries need the help of another cherry tree that blooms at the same time, in order to be able to produce fruit.
2. Check the Elevation Where You Want to Plant Your Cherry Tree
Trees planted in lower areas of the property will be more susceptible to frost. If you are thinking about growing sweet cherries, then it’s even more crucial that you place trees on higher ground. The varieties of trees which produce sweet cherries bloom early and are more likely to have their blossoms damaged by frost.
1. Protecting Fruit from Birds
Birds are fun to watch, but not when they are raiding your cherry tree of its precious fruit you’ve waited all year for. Investing in some netting made to keep small birds out is the best way to protect your harvest. If you are able to build a frame around the tree and drape the net over this frame, then the birds won’t be able to peck at the cherries right against the netting.
I have a whole slew of cherry pits I planted this fall, so I’m curious to see how many come up next spring. I’m hoping for a field full of cherry trees, but we’ll see! Are you planting cherry trees for ornamental purposes or to have something to harvest?
Top Photo Credit: The Gifted Photographer