The weeping Higan cherry (Prunus subhirtella) grows up to 30 feet in height with a weeping canopy that spreads up to 25 feet. Each spring the tree produces an abundance of light pink blossoms followed by brilliant green foliage that turns bright yellow in the fall. The tree is commonly grown as a landscape specimen. It requires ample room to grow.
Plant the weeping cherry tree in full sunlight. In areas with abundant wind, plant in a location that offers protection. The delicate weeping branches of the tree are quickly damaged in strong winds. The tree requires well-draining, moist soil. It will grow in clay or even sandy soil conditions with ease.
Many weeping cherry trees are grafted onto rootstock. A straight-trunked cherry tree rootstock and trunk are used. The weeping cherry tree is normally grafted 4 to 6 feet from the root system. If suckers develop at the base of the tree they must be promptly removed because they will not grow into weeping cherry trees but will grow true to the rootstock.
Apply 3 to 4 inches of mulch around the base of the weeping cherry tree all the way out to the drip line. The mulch helps to keep weeds at bay under the tree and keep turf grass back. This allows the tree's weeping limbs to grow almost to the ground without worrying about mowing under the tree. The mulch will also help the soil retain moisture in the heat of summer.
The weeping cherry is prone to several diseases. Bacterium often causes leaf spots or cankers to develop on the limbs of the tree. Promptly remove and dispose of all infected spots. Black knot causes large galls to appear on the limbs and must be promptly pruned out. Fertilize the tree using a general purpose fertilizer and keep it well watered to maintain its health so it does not suffer future sickness. Powdery mildew often afflicts the foliage of the tree but is easily treated with fungicides.
Aphid colonies or spider mites often form on the new growth of the weeping cherry tree. Remove the aphids or spider mites using a strong spray of water or insecticides. Scales often feed on the tree's limbs but are easily treated and prevented with horticulture oils. Borers plague weak or sick trees. Maintain the tree's health to prevent attacks from borers. Prune out areas afflicted with tent caterpillars, which will build nests on limbs and consume the tree's foliage