Every garden should have a cherry tree, for their irresistible fruit and beautiful blossom. They’re easy to care for and some varieties are even suitable for growing in pots on the patio. Our premium, bush-trained trees are grown outdoors in the South Downs on a family run farm where they’ve been doing things the traditional way for over a century. This makes the trees extra hardy and productive, giving you more bites of the cherry, sooner!
Which cherry tree?
Cherries can be harvested in early, mid or late summer, depending on the variety. For sweet eating cherries, choose Summer Sun, Stella or Lapins. For pies, jams and tarts, we recommend Morello, May Duke or Kordia. Dwarfing varieties Stella and Hartland are perfect for growing in pots on the patio - choose a pot at least 45cm in diameter and position it in a sunny spot. Get more help deciding with our easy 4-step guide.
What's the deal with rootstocks?
The eventual size of a cherry tree depends on its rootstock, so this is an important thing to consider. A tree on Colt rootstock will grow to between 3.5-5m tall, making it the best choice for large gardens and community orchards. An M26 semi dwarfing rootstock means that your cherry tree will be much more compact at 2.4-3m. Don’t worry if your favourite is on the ‘wrong’ rootstock as regular pruning can make any cherry tree fit your space.
Cherry trees are ideally suited for the UK climate and need little care. They will benefit from an annual mulch and a potassium-rich feed in the growing season. Growing your cherry tree in full sun will give you more blossom and fruit, but they will also tolerate partial shade. Protect the delicate buds against late frosts with a horticultural fleece and prune annually to keep a neat shape. If you only want one tree, choose a self fertile variety - partially self fertile trees (May Duke and Summer Sun) will benefit from a pollination partner and non self fertile trees (Kordia) will need one.
Using your cherries
Sweet cherries need nothing extra - just eat them fresh from the tree. Sour cherries need to be cooked to enjoy them, and can be made into pies, liqueurs and jams - black forest gateau is a must! Try making your crop into a traditional bakewell tart or show them off in a clafoutis, but make sure you save some for breakfast - stir them into Greek yogurt with a swirl of honey or fold them into pancakes.