Cherry trees are often planted not just for fruit, but for the blossoms they grow. Cherries have a variety of uses – from snacking to baking to making into jam. Cherries can be expensive at the grocery store, and planting a tree or two in the backyard can help save money on this versatile fruit. Follow these tips to care of cherry trees at home or on large acres of land.
Choosing Which Type of Cherry Tree to Plant
There are two main types of cherries trees. They vary in size, ease of care and flavor.
- Tart cherries are also known as sour or pie cherries. They are easy to grow, grow to about 20 feet tall, and do not need other trees to help pollinate. They take three to five years to grow fruit.
- Sweet cherries are the type usually found in grocery stores. They do best in mild and drier climates and need another compatible tree to help pollinate. They grow to about 35 feet, though dwarf varieties are available. They take five to seven years to grow fruit.
Caring for a Cherry Tree
Maintaining the moisture of soil is important for fruit growth. Water the soil if the top two inches are dry. Surrounding the tree with a thick layer of organic mulch will help keep the moisture. Cherry trees do not need to be heavily pruned. In late winter, prune the tree to encourage growth for the next harvest.
Picking the Cherries
Once cherries are fully red in color and begin to fall from the tree, it is time to harvest. It’s important to wait for the cherries to fall from the tree because cherries do not ripen once picked. Tart cherries can be left on the tree for an extra day or two to sweeten. Gently pull each cherry, and make sure to keep the stem attached so they stay fresh longer.
NOTE: Be careful to avoid pulling the fruit spur, or the small twig the stems are attached to, or less fruit will grow for the next harvest!
Protecting Cherries from Birds
Another way to know when cherries are ready for harvesting is when the birds visit the plant. Birds love cherries and can ruin an entire crop. Covering the trees with protective netting can keep birds from picking the crop. A preventative method to keep birds away is to spray the area with repellent, like Avian Control bird repellent spray to keep birds away before harvest even begins.
Protect Cherries with Avian Control Bird Repellent Spray!
Avian Control bird repellent spray can help protect cherry crops all season long. The non-toxic spray won’t harm birds or the cherry crop’s growth, appearance or taste. Apply Avian Control spray every two weeks to keep birds away all season. Contact us online or call 888.868.1982 to learn more or place an order, today!