Buds on bare root Cherry tree won't sprout

dkdivedudeApril 20, 2009

About 8 weeks ago I received several bare root fruit trees and bushes from an online company. Pretty much everything is growing except 3 dwarf North Star Cherry trees. Now it did take me about a week and a half after I received them before I got to plant them. In that time they were in my unheated dark basement, in their original moist plastic shipping container. I scraped one tree and it is green under the bark.

Any suggestions? I thought of taking all 3 trees out of the ground and soak it all, roots and buds overnight.

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Scott F Smith(6B/7A MD)

Don't try to do anything, disturbing the roots just makes things worse. Just wait and see is about all you can do.

Some trees never wake up due to loss of energy during digging up shipment etc. Sitting out for a long period in your basement didn't help. I have had particular problems with trees from Millers never waking up. Some of them stayed green under the bark most of the summer but they never woke.


    Bookmark   April 20, 2009 at 11:26AM
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Ok just to make sure. Is there nothing I can do? What about for example to wrap wet, and keep it wet paper towel around the buds in hopes of soaking and swelling them - just and idea.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 8:33AM
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olpea(zone 6 KS)

No, Scott's right, don't do anything. If the tree is alive it and the ground has proper moisture, the roots will supply the buds with sap. Keeping a wet paper towel around the buds will likely prolong dormancy by keeping the buds cooler and dark. Excessive soil moisture will also prolong dormancy.

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 11:34AM
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Just leave your trees alone. They will rise or fall as you originally planted them. Above all, do not ever soak cherry roots in water. Water is not the issue here, unless there is so much water around the tree roots from rainfall that they have drowned.

Excess moisture can kill cherry trees. They need to grow in a spot with good soil drainage. Cherries can also be slower to leaf out than other species.

Don Yellman, Great Falls, VA

    Bookmark   April 22, 2009 at 12:21PM
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