How to To Plant the Kwanzan Cherry


The Kwanzan cherry tree (Prunus serrulata 'Kwanzan') grows readily in USDA Plant Hardiness Zones 5B to 9A and provides a show of pink blossoms in the spring. Once of the two varieties planted in Washington, D.C., for the annual cherry blossom festival, the Kwanzan cherry grows well in yards or in containers, though the tree's average lifespan is only 15 to 25 years. Kwanzan cherry trees can be harmed by Verticilum wilt or several pests, including aphids, scales and borers.

Step 1

Select a site for your Kwanzan cherry tree, allowing for future growth. When mature, the tree averages 15 to 25 feet in both height and width. Kwanzan cherry trees prefer full sun.

Step 2

Dig a hole for your cherry tree twice the size of the plant's root ball. Remove any rocks or weeds from the hole so your cherry tree won't have to compete for resources.

Step 3

Pull the Kwanzan cherry tree out of its container by grasping the trunk and tugging upward. Massage the root ball with your hands to break it apart. Gently unwind and untangle the tree's roots. Trim any broken roots with clippers.

Step 4

Place your Kwanzan cherry tree in the hole so it rests at the same depth as it was planted in the container. Spread the roots out in the soil with your fingers.

Step 5

Backfill the hole with soil, pressing gently into the ground. Water the soil so it compresses around the trunk of the tree. Add water until the ground becomes saturated.

Step 6

Construct a watering ring around the base of the tree. Bring soil from other areas of the garden if you need extra soil. Build a soil berm 4 inches tall and equally thick to create a moat around the tree trunk.

Step 7

Water the newly planted tree by adding water to the moat. Apply 1 qt. of water every day during the first week after planting, then provide 1 to 2 qt. water every other day. For the third week offer 2 to 3 qt. of water every three days. Water once weekly in the fourth week by filling the watering ring. After this point, water only when the soil becomes dry and crumbly. The Kwanzan cherry should be able to survive on rainfall.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Kwanzan cherry sapling
  • Clippers


  • United States Forest Service: Kwanzan Cherry
  • Texas A & M: Planting a Tree
Keywords: Kwanzan cherry tree, plant a tree, plant ornamental cherry

About this Author

Based in Northern California, Elton Dunn is a freelance writer and nonprofit consultant with 14 years' experience. Dunn specializes in travel, food, business, gardening, education and the legal fields. His work has appeared in various print and online publications. Dunn holds a Master of Fine Arts in creative writing and a Bachelor of Arts in English.