How to Prune a Higan Weeping Cherry Tree


The Higan Weeping Cherry tree, also known botanically as Prunus subhirtella Pendula is an ornamental flowering cherry species that does not produce edible fruit. The main limbs are upright growing off of the trunk. Its branches spread slightly out and down and are covered in white or pale pink flowers in the late winter or early spring, depending on the climate. Weeping cherry trees require structural pruning when young to remove weak branching but do not require regular pruning once mature unless damaged or diseased or if their size outgrows the planting site.

Step 1

Prune your Weeping Higan Cherry tree in the late spring or early summer right after the tree finishes flowering and drops its blooms. According to the Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service, pruning later in the summer or fall or earlier in the spring will significantly reduce its blooms.

Step 2

Cut away any cracked, dead or diseased branches or any branches that rub or abrade one another as needed each year. Cut back to the place of healthy woody branch tissue or down to the parent branch or limb. Cut on the bias just 1/4-inch above a leaf axil or bud or down to the parent branch or limb.

Step 3

Reduce the spread of the canopy to allow walk-by access or prevent entanglement with nearby trees or structures. Prune back the terminal end tips of the branches as needed to reduce their length. Place all cuts on the bias just 1/4-inch above a leaf node or bud.

Things You'll Need

  • Pruning shears
  • Loppers
  • Fine-toothed pruning saw


  • University of Florida IFAS: Prunus subhirtella Pendula
  • Purdue University Cooperative Extension Service: Pruning Ornamental Trees and Shrubs
Keywords: Higan weeping cherry, pruning ornamental cherry, cutting flowering cherry

About this Author

An omni-curious communications professional, Dena Kane has more than 17 years of experience writing and editing content for online publications, corporate communications, business clients, industry journals, as well as film and broadcast media. Kane studied political science at the University of California, San Diego.