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Cherry Trees

Q.Cherry tree died 2018

Zone 27527 Zone 8 | wvanek added on June 29, 2019 | Answered

This is not a question, but an answer. A year ago, one of my two very healthy Kwanzaan cherry trees died right after flowering. It had sprouted about half as many leaves as its companion tree, 15 feet away, and then the leaves wilted. It was at that time that I asked what to do on this website. A man suggested sulfur and diatomaceous lime, thinking that it was a bacterial problem. (He also suggested that I peel off some bark to look for worm holes; I checked in two places, and there were zero holes.) I put both of those powders around all of my different cherry and dogwood trees. That seemed to stop the death, but I still had branches on cherries and azaleas that were not saved (too far gone already). This Spring, two of my dogwoods sprouted their blooms and leaves…except for the main branch on each tree. I had to cut off those dead branches–which did not look diseased, which made me wonder if the cold of winter was what killed them. But another very healthy dogwood got about half of its branches diseased in such a way that the pink flowers were gnarled and a little blackened (see photo). I pulled out the sulfur and lime from last year and put those around my cherries and dogwoods again. Like last year, existing damage was not saved, but all of my trees have lived. My learning from these incidents is that I’ll put out the lime and sulfur by early March, BEFORE the trees wake up, instead of waiting to see the need in April.

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Certified GKH Gardening Expert
Answered on June 30, 2019

I do remember this! Yes, existing damage will never recover, however, the new growth will! I'm glad that the trees survived. It sounds like you have a good grasp on how the products work now, and the best time to apply them.

You can do this once per year, every year. You can do this as needed, as well. As you have found out, though, it won't correct anything instantly, nor will it help badly infected growth.

Thank you for the feedback!

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