How to Pot an Ornamental Cherry Tree

Even if you’re short of space, you can still enjoy an ornamental cherry’s gorgeous spring blooms by planting a tree in a container. 

From: DK Books - Gardeners Guide
Prunus 'Taihaku'

Prunus 'Taihaku'

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

When planting an ornamental cherry in a pot, choose a specimen grown on a dwarf rooting stock, such as M26—this will restrict its size and keep it from outgrowing its container.

Materials Needed

  • ornamental cherry trees
  • weatherproof pot
  • rocks or broken pieces of old clay pots
  • gardening gloves
  • soil- or loam-based compost
  • controlled-release fertilizer
  • watering can or garden hose

Step 1: Place Rocks in Bottom of Pot

Add Loam Based Compost to Bottom of Planter

Add Loam Based Compost to Bottom of Planter

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

You might also consider using "crocks," which are broken pieces of old clay pots, in place of the rocks. Wearing gloves, add a layer of soil- or loam-based compost, and mix in controlled-release fertilizer, following the product guidelines.

Step 2: Soak Tree Roots

Coax Out Any Tree Roots Circling Root Ball

Coax Out Any Tree Roots Circling Root Ball

©2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2011, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Soak tree roots in a bucket before planting. Coax out any roots that are circling around the root ball, and stand the tree on the compost, ensuring it is upright. 

Step 3: Plant the Tree

Center Apple Tree in Container at Same Depth

Center Apple Tree in Container at Same Depth

©2012, Dorling Kindersley Limited

2012, Dorling Kindersley Limited

Plant the tree at the same level it was growing at in its original pot. Fill in with compost and firm down, leaving a 2in (5cm) gap between the rim of the pot and the compost for watering.

Step 4: Give the Tree a Good Soak

Water regularly—every couple of days in the summer—and feed annually in the spring with a slow-release fertilizer. Underplanting will add floral interest through the summer.

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