Cherry trees are known for their wood, sweet-smelling blooms and bright, juicy fruit. Because these fruit trees require a winter cold snap to set flowers and fruit, they grow in cooler zones than many other fruits and vegetables. To bear a fruit harvest, though, they require the right care and pollination of their flowers.
Cherry trees are stone fruit trees, meaning that the fruit has pits in the center, rather than seeds. These types of trees are more resistant to cold, and grow in a wider area than other fruit trees. They also require cold temperatures in winter to prompt flowers, and won't bloom or bear fruit unless they receive that cold snap.
Cherry trees generally fall into one of two categories: wild or domestic. Wild cherry trees are hardier to cold and bear sour cherries, while domestic cherries like the Bing type are slightly more sensitive, but grow sweet, tasty cherries.
According to Flower Pot Heaven, domestic cherries cannot self pollinate, which means the flowers on a single tree can't pollinate themselves or others on the same tree. Trees like Bing cherries require a second tree for pollination if they're to produce fruit.
Because domestic cherry trees are self-infertile, planting a second cherry tree virtually guarantees cross pollination between the two. Plant a sour cherry tree within 30 feet of a Bing cherry tree to give both trees room to growth. The Bing cherry flowers will only accept pollen from the wild cherry tree, while the wild cherry flowers will accept pollen from both wild cherry and Bing cherry flowers. The resulting cherries will be hybrids of Bing and wild cherry flavors.
Cherries bloom in early spring, before any other fruit tree. At that time, wind, bees, butterflies and birds will assist in the pollination of the blooms on both Bing and wild cherry trees. If you don't have many birds or bees in your area, consider purchasing insects like wasps, ladybugs and bees to release into your garden for pollination, or set up bird feeders and bird baths to attract birds to the area.