The Q&A Archives: Tree purchased will not sprout leaves

Question: For a mother's day present I purchased a Flowering Double Cherry. I got it home and followed the instructions for planting (root stimulator, soil, and fertilizer) I water it constantly, and it did manage a few leaves but they have since faded. No more have come about. Any suggestions on how I can get this tree to come back.

Bill Clark

Answer: It doesn't sound healthy! I wonder if you can return the tree and have it exchanged for a healthier one? If not, you might be able to nurse this one along. Begin by reducing the water it receives; too much water can drive the oxygen out of the soil and tree roots need oxygen as well as moisture. Instead of watering it constantly, build a water ring or watering basin beneath the tree. Once a week water your tree by filling the basin, allowing it to drain, then filling it a second time. This will concentrate the moisture over the rootmass and allow it to trickle down, wetting the entire root mass. Water only once each week during the growing season. The roots should establish themselves in a few weeks and you should see some new leaves and stem growth. Hope so!

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