Cut Down My Cherry Tree

June 10th, 2012

A couple days ago I cut down my cherry tree, and unlike George Washington, I didn’t feel bad about it.

I bought this tree in 06 or 07, and it grew like crazy, lots of wood, lots of leaves. The caliper (diameter of trunk) on it flew past a pear tree I had planted in 04, about 10 inches across, and this was supposed to be a dwarf. It also got significantly taller than that pear tree, even with some pruning.

I believe it was supposed to be a starkcrimson sweet cherry, but maybe they messed up sending it to me.

It fruited for me a couple years, I probably got only about 10 total cherries though, and they didn’t taste good. Not sour, not sweet, bland.

Meanwhile it had completely shaded one of the few areas of my property that gets significant sun, depriving me of some real estate to grow vegetables or other edibles.

It was also infested with black cherry aphids, every year.

This used to be my cherry tree.

So I think I have discovered why cherries are so expensive at the store, they’re difficult to grow. Apparently they need some pretty specific pruning and won’t otherwise fruit like an apple would, they also need more in the form of pest controls. I am still convinced though that I got some supervigorous rootstock graft or something.

So I cut it down, and now I will never get cherries, but that is okay, because in the space that is now no longer shaded I have planted a bunch of squash and a few other things in containers. I should get at least 50 pounds of butternut from this area. So when I look back and weigh 50 pounds of squash vs 6 or 7 cherries, maybe, it wasn’t a hard decision.

I just wish I had never planted it in the first place.
I did save a bunch of the wood, I think I’ll use it in my smoker.

7 Responses to “Cut Down My Cherry Tree”

  1. Chet Stentiford  Says:

    Cross pollinators and disease control; seem to be the main concern with Cherry …
    Cherry are a plant that need a number of fungicide sprays early spring first at leaf and bud break then again after flowering and one more time after the leaves are fully opened.

    At least two varieties are necessary for good cross pollination and fruiting.
    Also watch for insect infestations and spray accordingly…there are organic means if you prefer.

    Good luck

  2. Tony  Says:

    I had a fully grown cherry tree for a number of years before I too cut it down to make way for the light. I live in the UK near Sherwood Forest and never had any problem with it fruiting even though I never did anything to help it. That particular species of tree seemed to be well suited to our area.

    Each year there must have been a few hundredweight of cherries on it. Unfortunately, the most number of cherries I ever got from it was twenty. The reason being the starlings and the blackbirds always got there first. They ate all the cherries just before they became ripe. The only reason I got any at all is because I managed to get a net around one branch one year. Even then the birds reached through and got in as far as they could.

    One side effect of this was that we got some very colorful bird droppings around our area for about a month each year. Had to keep the car garaged.

    After I cut it down, new shoots sprouted up from along the length of the old roots. Most of them coming up through the lawn but some came up through the tarmac of the public footpath outside my home. Took about three years before the shooting finally stopped and even then I had to have the old tree stump dug out completely.

    Don’t you just love cherry trees!

    Enjoy your sunshine.

    Tony

  3. Jessica  Says:

    It’s hard to know what will work in the garden before you try it. I have two avocado trees that I planted from seed. They are beautiful but after three years they haven’t yielded anything (which I guess is not uncommon for avocado trees). 50 lbs of squash sounds like a trade up though!

  4. Carolina John  Says:

    Even dwarf cherries do tend to get really big by most standards. Hate that it didn’t work out, I’ve planted some cherries that have been great and others that never really produced.

  5. Andrew  Says:

    Second that: I would put disease control first.

    I think the issues for many newbie gardeners is precisely what you have pointed out here.
    They think, what tree can I have in my garden, I like Cherries, that’s it, we will have a cherry tree.

    It’s the ‘after the purchase’ realisation and disappointment that often makes them give up.

    Another Good Post about the realities of gardening.

  6. Simon Smith  Says:

    I think, like others have said, cherry trees have a great problem with pests, whether it’s birds or aphids. And if you don’t get the right variety, their fruit can be dull.

    In the end, with such a huge amount of issues, why would you keep it?! At least now you know that it’s not worth it!

  7. Christine Davis  Says:

    Wild cherry tree in my back yard will come down today. I have enjoyed this old tree. My son had his tree house in it. My son has grown with this special memory of the old cherry tree.
    I hate to see our shady tree leave us. But one day we all will leave behind a treasured memory. Hope it will be as beautiful as the old cherry tree.
    Have a great day. Enjoyed everyone comment.
    Christine Davis

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