Cherry trees are popular elements in landscaping and backyard orchards. Their care requires the use of a few simple tools, some necessary and others optional. If you are considering adding a cherry tree to your landscape, it would be a good idea to review the suggested tools you will need to provide proper care and maintenance and for picking your cherries.
Hand pruners are small, about 8 inches in length and resemble a pair of shears. They are used for trimming small branches with a diameter smaller than 1.5 inch and for cutting cherry stems at harvest time. Loppers are hand held branch cutters, about 18 to 24 inches long, with a solid, curved lower jaw for stabilizing the branch and an upper blade jaw for cutting it. Loppers are normally used for branches of 1.5 inch to 2.5 inch diameters.
runers are the same as loppers, but are located at the end of an extension pole, which can often be adjusted to reach heights not attainable by hand alone. They are operated by positioning the jaws around the branch to be cut and pulling a string that closes the jaws. They extend your reach by 10 to 15 feet.
Pole saws are extension poles with a curved saw mounted on the end. They are used to cut branches with diameters greater than 2 inches that are beyond reach from the ground with a traditional saw. Fully extended, they add 10 to 15 feet of height to the worker's reach.
Ladders are used for pruning and picking the cherries. Height of the ladder should be determined by the height of the tree.
Planting and Trunk Maintenance
Trunk protectors are vinyl guards that fit around the trunk of young trees to protect them from animals that strip the bark or lawn equipment that could damage it. The lower 3 feet of the trunk are protected.
Tree stakes or anchors and straps or ties are used to secure a trunk in place and direct its growth. Typically they are used to keep a trunk growing in an upright and straight manner. Ties or straps are fastened around the trunk and then attached to stakes or anchors. The stakes or anchors are driven into the ground at a short distance from the tree and with sufficient tension to provide the desired guidance.
A round, pointed shovel is used to dig the hole for planting the cherry tree and for depositing mulch around the base of the tree each year.
Cherry Protection and Harvesting Tools
Netting can be draped over cherry trees to prevent birds from stealing the crop. Nets come in several sizes and should be chosen based on the size of the cherry tree.
Gloves are used while pruning and while picking to protect hands from nicks and cuts and to limit staining of skin while picking cherries.
A bucket with a harness allows the picker to harvest cherries without having to hold the bucket or rest it precariously on a ladder, leaving both hands free to pick.