Japanese flowering cherry is an Asian species known more for its cultivars. The actual species is seldom sold. The cultivars produce showy flowers in spring and some good leaf color in autumn.
This plant has some cultivated varieties. Go to list of cultivars.
All Common Names:
- Residential and parks,
- Under utility lines
Tree or Plant Type:
- Deciduous (seasonally loses leaves)
- Small tree (15-25 feet)
- Full sun (6 hrs direct light daily)
- Zone 5 (Chicago),
- Zone 6
- Moist, well-drained soil
- Alkaline soil
- Moderately Tolerant
- Spring blossoms,
- Fall color,
- Fragrant flowers,
- Showy flowers,
- Attractive bark
Season of Interest:
- Early spring,
- Mid spring,
- Early fall
Flower Color & Fragrance:
Shape or Form:
- Insect pollinators
Tree & Plant Care
This can be a high maintenance tree due to numerous disease and insect problems. Not all cultivars are hardy in zone 5. This can be a relatively short-lived tree.
Disease, pests, and problems
Susceptible to many diseases and insects, including black knot, mildew, borers, mites and tent caterpillars.
Native geographic location and habitat
Native to China, Japan and Korea.
Bark color and texture
Bark is smooth and shiny and is marked with long horizontal lenticels; red-brown in color.
Leaf or needle arrangement, size, shape, and texture
Simple, alternate leaves, lance-shaped and 2 to 5 inches long. Green in summer, changing to reddish bronze in fall.
Flower arrangement, shape, and size
Flowers may be pink or white, singles or doubles depending on cultivar. Flowering occurs in spring.
Fruit, cone, nut, and seed descriptions
Fruits are small red to black cherries. Some cultivars are sterile and produce no fruit.
Cultivars and their differences
Royal Burgundy (Prunus serrulata 'Royal Burgundy') has red-pink double flowers. New foliage emerges burgundy in spring. Reddish orange fall color.