Bing cherry trees are beloved for their firm, heart-shaped, garnet-colored cherries that are bursting with juicy, sweet flavor. They are one of the most popular grocery store dark sweet cherries, but you can grow one and reap the benefits in your own backyard.
Bing cherry trees do not self-pollinate, but if you pair them with a suitable mate, they will yield abundant crops of more than 50 pounds of fruit per year. Whether you want to pop sweet cherries in your mouth or make traditional preserves, Bing cherry trees are a great option.
Bing Cherry Trees at a Glance
- Deep, dark sweet cherries high in antioxidants
- Can produce a harvest of more than 50 pounds per year
- Attract pollinators like hummingbirds, butterflies, and bees
- Fragrant white blossoms in spring
- Not self-fertile, requires another cherry tree
- Not drought-tolerant
Bing cherry trees have a rounded canopy of long, dark green leaves with serrated edges that turn golden in the fall. The bark is smooth and reddish, with corky stripes. Bing cherries produce deep red-purplish fruit that is meaty with a small seed inside. Fragrant white flowers bloom in spring.
Standard Bing cherry trees grow to be 35 feet tall with a spread of 25 feet. Dwarf Bing cherry trees are 15 feet tall with a spread of 12-15 feet. They grow at a medium rate of 13-24 inches per year.
|Appearance||Dark green, 3-6 inch long leaves with serrated edges. Grows in round shape. Smooth, reddish bark with corky stripes. Cherries are deep, dark red|
|Height||Regular: 35 feet, Dwarf: 15 feet|
|Hardiness Zones||Zones 5-8|
|Type of tree||Deciduous|
|Sunlight requirements||Full sun|
|Soil composition||Well-drained, sandy soil with pH between 6-7|
USDA Hardiness Zones indicate the regions where different plants can grow and thrive based on minimum winter temperatures. Bing cherry trees grow in Zones 5-8, from Florida to Michigan and in between.
Choose an area that receives full sun and has well-drained, sandy soil. Pull any weeds and clear away any debris or turfgrass. Dig a hole that is roughly 1.5 feet deep and the same width as your tree.
Place your tree in the hole and backfill the soil, tamping down gently to get rid of any air bubbles. Water the area to settle the roots, and spread a 2-3 inch layer of mulch to preserve moisture.
Bing cherry trees only need a few requirements to stay healthy and happy.
Sun and shade
Bing cherry trees require full sun, or at least six hours of direct, unfiltered sunlight per day.
The ideal soil for growing Bing cherry trees is well-drained and sandy with a pH level of 6-7.
If your Bing cherry tree receives at least an inch of rain every 7-10 day during the growing season, you do not need to water it. But if it’s dry and hot, you should water once a week for 30 seconds using a slow tricking garden hose.
After that, you should water when the soil becomes dry. Press your index finger 2 inches into the surrounding soil. If it does not feel moist, it’s time to water.
Use a slow-release, nitrogen-rich fertilizer in the spring and again in mid-summer. A balanced fertilizer with an NPK value of 10-10-10 will do well. Make sure to apply the fertilizer 6-8 inches from the trunk.
You should prune when you see dead or diseased branches. To encourage horizontal branch growth, prune once a year in late winter when the tree is dormant.
Unfortunately, Bing cherry trees do not self-pollinate. You will need to purchase and plant a compatible cherry tree in order to harvest fruit. Good options include Black Tartarian, Lapin, Van, and Rainier.
While most Bing cherry trees will take 4-7 years to bear fruit after planting, some nurseries carry Bing cherry trees that will fruit the first year. Bing cherries are ready for harvest in mid-June or mid-summer.
Cherries don’t ripen off the tree, so it’s a good idea to sample a few to make sure they’re ready before picking them all. The individual fruits may sweeten and ripen at different times, so it could take a week to fully harvest your Bing cherries.
You can store Bing cherries at 32 degrees Fahrenheit for 7-10 days in perforated plastic bags. You can put them in your freezer for longer storage if needed.
Frequently Asked Questions
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