How to Plant a Japanese Weeping Cherry Tree


The Japanese weeping cherry tree, Prunus subhirtella var. pendula, provides year-round interest even though its bloom period is relatively short. It tolerates moderate winter conditions and does well in zones 5 through 8. P. subhirtella var. pendula is grafted onto the roots of a compatible species. The graft is located at the top of the trunk, just below the cascading branches.

Step 1

Choose a location for Japanese weeping cherry tree that receives eight hours of sun a day. This tree spreads out and can reach 15 to 30 feet in width. It prefers moist but well-drained soil.

Step 2

Dig a hole twice as wide as the root ball and as deep as the container or B & B (balled and burlaped) tree. Place 4 inches of sand in the bottom of the hole for drainage. Mix some organic material (peat moss, leaf mold, manure, or compost) into the soil that has been removed. The ratio should be 1/3 organic matter to 2/3 soil.

Step 3

Remove the plant from its container. If the roots are a dense mass, score the root ball deeply in three places with the pruning saw. This will help prevent girdling. Prune any visibly damaged roots. If the plant is balled and burlaped, place the tree in the hole before removing the wrapping. Remove as much of the wrapping as you can and remove all the strings. What is left of the burlap will disintegrate over time.

Step 4

Fill in around roots with the mix. When you have filled in the hole halfway, fill the planting hole with water. As it drains, it will settle the planting mix around the roots. Continue filling in the hole and water again.

Step 5

Water every day for the first two weeks, then weekly for the first year, as needed, while the tree is actively growing. Once established, the Japanese weeping cherry will be more tolerant of dry conditions.

Things You'll Need

  • Shovel
  • Sand
  • Organic matter
  • Pruning saw
  • Pruning shears
  • Garden hose


  • Weeping Cherry Tree
  • Weeping Cherry
Keywords: site requirements of Japanese weeping cherry trees, How to plant Prunus subhirtella var. pendula, What is the requirements of Prunus subhirtella var. pendula

About this Author

Joan Puma is a graduate of Hofstra University with a Bachelor of Arts degree in fine arts, and has worked in the film industry for many years as a script supervisor. Puma's interest in gardening lead her to write The Complete Urban Gardener, which was published by Harper & Row. Other interests include, art history, medieval history, and equitation.