Cherry trees are fruit-producing trees that are believed to have originated in Asia Minor somewhere in the vicinity between the Caspian and Black Sea. Bing cherry trees produce sweet cherries which can be eaten raw, but they can also be used to make pies, jams and various desserts. The trees can grow as tall as 50 feet and are hardy in the USDA Zones 5 to 8. When planting bing cherry seeds keep in mind they will not grow true from seed.
Preparing Bing Cherry Seeds
Remove ripe bing cherries from a tree. Place the cherries into a bowl. Use a food masher and mash the cherries into a pulp.
Place the bing cherry seeds into a colander or sieve. Wash off the cherry seeds thoroughly to remove all pulp since it can inhibit germination.
Set the seeds into a bowl. Cover the seeds with water and let them soak for 2 days. Make sure you change the water in the container twice daily.
Lay two paper towels out flat, one on top of the other. Mist the surface of the paper towels until they are well moistened, but not wringing wet.
Lay the bing cherry seeds out onto the paper towels. Fold up the paper towels with the cherry seeds inside.
Place the folded paper towels into a zipper top resealable plastic bag. Slide the bag closed.
Place the bag into your refrigerator where the temperature will stay between 35 and 40 degrees F. Check on the paper towels in the bag at least twice weekly to ensure the towels are staying moist. Mist the towels with water when they feel dry to the touch. Keep the bag in the refrigerator for 4 months.
Planting Bing Cherry Seeds
Fill up 1-gallon plastic pots with a well-draining potting mix.
Pack the soil down firmly in each of the pots. Poke 1/2-inch deep holes in the center of each pot. Drop in one cherry seed per hole. Cover up the cherry seeds with no more than 1/2 inch of soil.
Place each of the pots in a location that will provide protection from wind and sun. There should be about 8 to 10 hours of indirect light made available each day. The soil should remain on the moist side, but never soaking wet. Germination of bing cherry seeds can begin as soon as 3 to 4 months but may require as long as 1 year.
Transplant the bing cherry trees when they are approximately 6 to 10 inches tall. Plan on planting the trees in early spring, between March and late April.
Dig planting holes for the trees that are spaced between 20 and 25 feet apart. Remove a tree from its growing container by cutting along the sides of the pot using a pair of all-purpose snips.
Plant a bing cherry tree into a previously created planting hole. Scoop soil into the hole until it is full. Pack the soil down around the tree and water thoroughly using at least 2 to 3 gallons of water.
Water the bing cherry trees throughout the summer growing season for the first 2 years after planting. Water each cherry tree when the soil at a depth of 3 to 4 inches feels dry to the touch.