Plant Care 101: Weeping Cherry Tree

Blair Brown — Jul 18, 2019

As one of the first to bloom, the weeping cherry tree is synonymous with the spring season. However, it can be planted nearly any time of the year. And now is the time to plan next year's garden for vibrant color, blossoms, and fragrance. If you've already got a weeping cherry tree of your own (whether it's pink, white, a Yoshino, an Extraordinaire, or another popular variety), we're here to help you keep it growing strong. 

Or, if you're looking to add something new to your garden, look no further. In most landscapes, the weeping cherry tree is not hard to care for, from planting to long-term maintenance and beyond—especially with our tips and tricks!

How to Plant the Weeping Cherry Tree

Selecting the perfect location is the first step. Thankfully, the weeping cherry tree isn't finicky or fussy, needing only full sun and well-drained soil to get those white or pink flowers in the spring.

Weeping Cherry Sunlight Needs

When we say full sun, we mean 6 to 8 hours of sunlight daily, with some protection from the harsh afternoon sun. The weeping cherry acclimates best in growing zones 5 through 8, meaning it's cold hardy down to -10°F, and it can grow in western, northern and southern regions. 

Planting Directions for Your Weeping Cherry

Once you've selected your location and are ready to plant your weeping cherry, dig a hole that's about twice the width of your tree's root ball, with some extra width to accommodate its mature growth. From there, planting couldn't be simpler. Place your cherry tree, backfill the soil and then water to settle your tree's roots. Finally, mulch the area to conserve moisture. When you mulch, avoid touching the tree's trunk and only apply the mulch to the adjacent soil.

Weeping Cherry Tree

Ongoing Weeping Cherry Care

When it comes to long-term care, the most important part is watering. The weeping cherry is carefree, so it doesn't take much. We recommend watering your tree about once or twice weekly as a general rule of thumb, but if you're not sure when to water, just check the soil.

When the top 3 inches of soil are dry around your tree, it's time to water. A slow trickle with a garden hose until the soil is moist is best. Remember: the weather does matter with the weeping cherry. If you're going through a period of drought, it may be necessary to water your weeping cherry twice a week. When it's colder outside, you may only need to water once every two or three weeks.

Fertilizing the Weeping Cherry for Plenty of Pink Flowers

When it's smaller, it will look much like an ornamental cherry tree (think: Snow Fountains®)—however, with the right care, many weeping cherries can grow up to 30 feet tall and 25 feet wide! So, for the first couple of years, simply keep any errant weeds away from your tree to ensure your cherry is getting the most out of the surrounding soil.

When the third year of growth arrives, fertilize your weeping cherry with a nitrogen blend. Apply this blend once in the spring, or spread the blend into 2 to 4 equal applications spanning through early and late spring and summer seasons. The healthier your weeping cherry, the better chance you have of getting more fragrant flowers.

How Do You Prune a Weeping Cherry Tree?

Don't be intimidated by the pruning process—it's easy! All you need to do is remove any old, faded pink or white flowers in the winter to promote growth for the following season. Prune your weeping cherry tree during dormancy and, as always, remove dead, damaged or diseased branches.

FGT Tip: Always sterilize your tools with rubbing alcohol for a healthy cut during pruning.

Caring for the Weeping Cherry Tree

Here are a few more tips to keep your weeping cherry tree lush and lovely.

  • No serious pest or disease issues affect our weeping cherry tree, so no harsh sprays are needed. In the rare case that you do encounter issues, treat your cherry with a natural insecticidal soap or BioNeem solution. Note: If you're still deciding on which type of weeping cherry to plant, consider the disease-resistant Pink Snow Showers™ Weeping Cherry.
  • The weeping cherry is drought tolerant, heat tolerant and stands strong against snow and ice. But if you experience temperatures below -10°F in your area, use a frost blanket to protect your tree during the winter.

With our care tips, you'll have springtime beauty that's hassle-free and has tons of color to elevate your gardenscape.

Learn more about this spring staple here!

Blair Brown

Blair is the Content Marketing Manager at FastGrowingTrees.com, and though she's not your traditional gardener, the planting world is definitely growing on her (pun intended!). She's enjoyed digging into plant care and maintenance and growing her plant collection, especially with exotic indoor varieties.

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