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How Much Water Do Cherry Trees Need?

Young cherry trees need a few inches (5–8 cm) of water every 1–2 weeks as they develop. However, a mature tree can thrive on 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water every 1–2 weeks. Water your cherry tree enough to moisten the root ball but not wet it. Wet conditions will lead to disease but moist conditions will ensure robust root growth. During hot, dry weather conditions your cherry trees may need extra care and watering.

How much water do cherry trees need?

How Much Water Do Cherry Trees Need Per Day?

It’s best to water the root zone of your cherry trees once every 1–2 weeks instead of providing daily watering. Deep, infrequent soakings are the preferred method for watering cherries because the water needs to penetrate several inches deep into the soil. Shallow, frequent watering won’t penetrate down to the roots of the tree.

  • You do not need to water your cherry tree every day.
  • Cherry trees grow best when they are watered once every 1–2 weeks.
  • Young cherry trees need 2–3 inches (5–7.5 cm) of water every 1–2 weeks.
  • Mature cherry trees only need 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water every 1–2 weeks.

The amount of water a cherry tree needs varies depending on age. Younger trees need a lot more water to sustain early growth. For the first year after planting, provide 2–3 inches (5–7.5 cm) of water every 1–2 weeks. Once your tree is established for more than one year, reduce watering to 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water every 1–2 weeks 

How Do You Water Cherries?

Cherry trees require deep watering from a soaker hose or garden hose every 1–2 weeks. To water your tree, lay a soaker hose in a spiral under the tree’s branch canopy. Then, evenly water this entire area for 1–2 hours for young trees. For older trees, water for 30–60 minutes.

  • Soak your cherries once every week or two with a garden or soaker hose.
  • Arrange a soaker hose to evenly water the tree’s entire root zone.
  • Water first-year trees for 1–2 hours every 1–2 weeks.
  • After the first year, water your tree for 30–60 minutes every 1–2 weeks.

Drip irrigation or sprinkler systems can work for watering cherry trees, but they have to be managed carefully. Drip irrigation can fail to moisten the soil deeply enough to reach the root ball. If this happens, your tree will be underwatered despite your irrigation technically providing what should be enough water. Use this soaker hose to thoroughly water your cherry trees.

Do Cherry Trees Like Wet or Dry Soil?

Cherry trees like moist soil that is not too wet. This can be a hard soil moisture level to achieve. It’s generally recommended that you soak your tree all at once. Then you can let it dry out for a week or two in between to ensure that the conditions are not too wet. This should ensure healthy tree growth.

  • Moist soil is best for new and established trees.
  • Both wet soil and dry soil will lead to health issues with your cherries.

If your fruit trees appear to be growing slower than usual, it is best to check that their soil is at the right level of moisture. Use this moisture meter to track the moisture level of your soil and adjust your watering as needed.

Can You Overwater Cherries?

Cherry trees react poorly to having their roots wet for too long. Wet roots lead to fungal diseases like root rot which can kill the tree. This is why consistent watering can be an issue if it’s done too frequently. 

  • Cherry trees can easily be overwatered.
  • Wet roots lead to fungal diseases that can kill the tree.
  • Other danger signs include leaf drop, yellowing, loss of cherry blossoms, and swampy soil.

Aside from fungal disease, common signs of overwatering include swampy soil conditions and drooping leaves. An overwatered cherry tree may also begin to yellow or lose its blossoms. These signs can be hard to distinguish from signs of underwatering. Thus, it’s usually best to judge by the soil conditions rather than what’s happening to the tree.

How Do You Know If Cherries Need Water?

Cherry trees show they are underwatered when the leaves wilt, yellow, and begin to drop off. The rule of thumb is to first check the soil to see what that is like. If the soil around your cherry tree is dry and beginning to crack, it is time to water. Long dry spells can quickly turn happy trees into dead trees.

  • Signs of underwatered cherries include leaf loss, wilting, and yellowing.
  • Be sure to check the surrounding soil for signs of drying before these issues occur.

You need to make sure that your tree is getting proper watering on a regular basis. Regular watering helps to ensure critical root growth. Adequate water is vital because cherry trees are not a very drought-tolerant species of plant.

Do Cherry Trees Require Lots of Water?

Cherry fruit trees do require a fair bit of water to grow when they are young. They may also need additional watering in hot weather with lots of sun and will require adequate drainage to avoid health issues. Here are the most important things to keep in mind when it comes to growing cherries:

  • Young cherry trees require 2–3 inches (5–7.5 cm) of water every 1–2 weeks.
  • Mature cherry trees only need 1 inch (2.5 cm) of water every 1–2 weeks.
  • Cherry trees are best watered through soaking—this ensures adequate moisture in the soil.
  • Drip irrigation can work for cherries but may not penetrate deeply enough to feed cherry roots..
  • Cherry trees prefer moist soil and suffer from health issues if conditions are too dry or wet.
  • Wait for the soil to dry out before adding extra water to avoid overwatering.
  • Underwatered and overwatered cherry trees show similar signs of distress including leaf loss and wilting/discoloration.

Growing cherry trees in your yard may seem demanding but they are a rewarding fruit to grow. If you take the time to learn how to properly water them, you’ll be rewarded with amazing cherries in no time.

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