Weeping Cherry Won't Bloom - Knowledgebase Question

Greeneville, TN
Avatar for sezaic
Question by sezaic
March 19, 2007
Hello. I've had a 9ft tall weeping cherry tree in my yard for about three years, when it was transplanted there in the summer. She had big beautiful leaves, and she's continued to have beautiful leaves to this day. She she's growing like crazy. The thing is that when the next spring came around after she was transplanted, the tree only bloomed about 5 blooms total. The next year only three blooms. Now, this spring, I've noticing that the leaves are starting to bud out, but there isn't a single flower anywhere. There are, though, all sorts of little rusty red seed-like things all around the tree. Her leaves are coming out as healthy as ever. What am I not doing that might help her bloom? Any help would be appreciated. Thank you.

Answer from NGA
March 19, 2007
There are several possible causes for lack of bloom that I can think of. One possible reason is that the tree is still becoming established and needs to mature before it blooms fully. Another possibility is that it is planted in less than full sun; these trees really need full direct sun all day to bloom. Another is that it is being overfertilized (for instance planted in lawn that is heavily fertilized plus fertilizing the tree would be too much.)

Another is that it is setting ample flower buds but that they are not surviving through the winter. Your zip code places you in zone 6, and if the tree is planted in an exposed or windy spot it may be too cold for the flower buds to survive. The winter cold issue depends on what specific kind of cherry you have, some are more winter hardy than others.

As far as the little rusty seed like things, some kinds of cherry develop little lumpy spots on the bark as a natural thing. But if the spots are oozes of sap on the bark, that would indicate a problem, such as a disease or insect infestation. If the spots are on the foliage, that would also indicate a problem. You might want to consult with a professionally trained nurseryman or with your local County Extension to see if you can get a better identification of the spots. I hope it's nothing serious.

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