How Often To Water A Cherry Tree

Cherry trees are a popular choice for gardens and rural yards, adding beauty and a unique flavor to a landscape, especially during the flowering and fruiting seasons. Growing a healthy and fruitful cherry tree, however, is dependent on proper watering. Incorrect watering significantly weakens the tree and makes it more susceptible to various diseases and damages. This article will provide information on how to correctly water a cherry tree, from background to advanced topics, and how often to do it.

What is the need for watering?

Water is essential for a cherry tree to survive, grow and develop fruit. Water helps the tree absorb nutrients from the soil and provides moisture for photosynthesis and other regular tree activities. Without water, the tree begins to dry out and become vulnerable to diseases and pests. Furthermore, a lack of water hinders the formation of fruit.

How much and how often to water?

Most cherry trees require about an inch of water per week through the regular growing and fruiting season. Deep, infrequent watering is the best way to provide it. Water the cherry tree about once a week, giving it an inch of water each time. This will encourage the tree to develop deep roots which can draw water from deeper layers in the soil.

Extended periods of dryness

During a dry, hot period, cherry trees may require watering more often than once a week. Water the tree more frequently during this time, but remember to continue deep watering; pouring a little bit of water each time will not be as beneficial. If a drought persists, contact the local extension office to find out exactly how much and often to water the tree during the dry spell.

Methods of watering

Most often, a garden hose with a gentle stream of water, such as a “shower” setting, is the best way to water a cherry tree. Another good option is a drip irrigation system that feeds water to the base of the tree slowly over a period of time, mimicking the drip of rain that a cherry tree would get naturally. Avoid quick, shallow sprinkling or hard, concentrated jets of water.

Fertilizing and Mulching

Fertilization helps cherry trees to grow healthy, vigorous and fruit-bearing. Fertilizer should be given to a cherry tree twice a year, once during early spring and then again in summer when the fruit begins to develop. Mulching the base of the tree will also help to keep the soil moist and reduce the need for watering. A thick layer of mulch around the tree’s base minimizes water evaporation and prevents roots from drying out.

Special care in extreme climates

In extreme climates, cherry trees require a special approach to watering. In extremely hot and dry climates, water more than an inch per week. In areas prone to heavy winters, cherry trees are often planted raised, to provide better drainage and avoid root-rot or flooding. During winter, water cherry trees only when necessary, as it can put excessive strain on its frozen branches.

Monitoring for signs of stress

Cherry trees that are not properly watered will exhibit signs of stress. Leaves may yellow or wilted branches may be evident. If a cherry tree shows signs of stress, water it deeply and consistently. If any signs persist, contact the local extension office for assistance.

Best timing for the watering

The best time to water a cherry tree is early in the morning. This helps to prevent evaporation that would occur if the tree is watered at midday or in the afternoon. Some gardeners also suggest watering the tree again in the evening, to ensure that the roots have enough moisture to get through the night.

Regular maintenance

Maintaining a healthy cherry tree requires a few simple measures. Water the tree weekly, fertilize twice a year and have a thick layer of mulch around the base of the tree. Monitor the tree for signs of stress. Take extra measures to care for the tree if necessary and contact the local extension office if any difficulties arise.

Managing water for long-term health

Proper watering is one of the most important activities for developing and maintaining a healthy cherry tree. With the right water regime, the tree will be strong, disease-resistant, and capable of bearing fruit for many years. On the other hand, unreliable or overly frequent watering can damage the tree and make it vulnerable to diseases and pests.

The effect of rainfall on watering

Rainfall can also provide moisture to the tree and reduce the need for watering. During rainy periods, water cherry trees only if necessary, to avoid over-saturating the soil and damaging the roots and trunk. In general, most cherry trees need to be watered at least once a week, regardless of weather.

Testing the soil moisture

If you are ever unsure of when to water a cherry tree, you can use a soil moisture testing device to check the level of moisture in the soil. This inexpensive device can be inserted into the soil to measure the water content of a certain area, providing an exact indication of when the tree needs to be watered.

Factors affecting watering

The need for watering a cherry tree varies based on several factors, such as the size of the tree and its location. Large trees may require more frequent or deeper watering, while a smaller tree may need less depending on the local rainfall and other environmental conditions. Additionally, mature trees may require less water than younger cherry trees.


Knowing how often to water a cherry tree is essential for a healthy and fruitful tree. Water the tree about once a week, giving it an inch of water each time. Monitor the tree for signs of stress and take extra measures to care for the tree if necessary. Remember to use a gentle stream of water, such as a shower setting, and consider using a soil moisture testing device to help determine when the tree needs to be watered.

Gordon Wesson is an environmentalist and author who lives in the Pacific Northwest. He has been writing for many years about topics related to trees, the environment, and sustainability. In particular, he is passionate about educating people on the importance of living in harmony with the environment and preserving natural spaces. He often speaks at conferences and events around the country to share his knowledge with others. His dedication to protecting our planet makes him one of the leading voices in his field today.

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