Cherry trees are a delicious and cheerful addition to any garden. Not only should you be treated to a lovely yield of delicious berries, you will also have a beautiful looking display of blossom in the spring time. Sweet cherries are great to eat as they are and acid cherries can be used to make delicious jams and puddings. Whichever variety you choose a cherry tree can be a great addition to many gardens.

Growing cherry trees:

Cherry trees can be grown from seed but it is much easier to buy a one or two year old sapling from the garden centre or nursery and this is by far the most common thing for gardeners to do. Cherries can be grown as small open-centred trees, or fanned against a wall or fence.

Sweet Cherry trees prefer a deep, fertile and well-drained soil with a pH of 6.5-6.7. They do not like shallow sandy or waterlogged soil and do best in full sun. Acid Cherry trees on the other hand will tolerate some shade.

Some sweet cherries will require another cherry tree nearby whereas others are self-fertile. All acid cherries are fine on their own.

Cherry trees should be planted between November and March, to the same depth as they were in the pot. They should be mulched with well-rotted organic matter in late February and the area around the tree should be kept clear of grass and other competing weeds. A guild of comfrey and beneficial herbs and flowers around the base will help cherry trees to become established and keep them healthy. Water cherry trees well while they are small to ensure they survive their first year or two in your garden.

If you want to shape your tree then the pruning should be done in spring just as the buds begin to open, while established trees should be pruned in the summer, between late July and the end of August. Note when pruning that sweet cherries form on wood that is one year old and older, while acid cherries form almost all their cherries on growth formed the previous season. With the acid cherries you will have to make sure that you get the balance when pruning between one year old fruiting wood and new replacement branches.

Why Grow cherry trees in the garden?

Aside from the delicious fruit, cherry trees will also be a boon to insects and help increase bio-diversity of insect and animal life in your garden.

They also look very lovely throughout the year, especially in the spring. 

Quick Facts

Latin Name
Prunus avium