Common Weeping Cherry Tree Problems

By Jonathan Bales , last updated January 16, 2012

Like its relative the weeping willow, the weeping cherry tree is known for its drooping branches. Pink and white flowers blossom from the tree each spring. The weeping cherry tree is able to grow in soils that have few nutrients, sometimes resulting in unhealthy specimens. Below are a few of the problems a weeping cherry tree might encounter, and how best to combat them!

Disease

Bacterial diseases such as leaf spot and twig canker sometimes infect otherwise healthy weeping cherry trees. Cherry leaf spot causes dark spots on the tree's leaves, resulting in them falling off early. Twig canker can be detected when black or brown spots exist on the tree's bark. Fungal infections, such as brown rot, cause the tree's fruit to rot and can also infect the branches and flowers.

Pests

Pests such as aphids, spider mites and borers can attack weeping cherry trees. This often happens during times of drought when other insects, such as pirate bugs and lady beetles, fail to inhabit the tree. These insects would normally rid the tree of many of its pests. Tent caterpillars can also be a problem for weeping cherry trees.

Keeping Your Weeping Cherry Healthy

The most important thing you can do to keep your tree healthy is make sure its soil receives adequate moisture. This alone will rid the tree of many pests, and, when combined with proper sunlight, it will also prohibit many fungal infections. Thus, it is a good idea to plant weeping cherry trees near a stream or lake where they will receive adequate moisture and sunlight.

Implementing the aforementioned pirate bugs and lady beetles will keep many pests away. In the event that this does not work, an insecticide will be necessary. It is also crucial to properly prune weeping cherry trees. Trimming the tips of the branches just a few inches from the ground allows for proper nutrient distribution. Be careful to not harm the bark of the tree, however, as this could leave it vulnerable to bacterial or fungal infections.

Resources and References
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