Cherry tree issue #817085

Asked November 30, 2022, 2:10 PM EST

Attached photo is from our cherry tree, planted maybe 4 years ago. I posted on Pacific Northwest Gardening Facebook page. Suggestions were possibly gummosis or borers. They suggested I contact you.

Washington County Oregon

Expert Response

Hi Dan- Thanks for your picture of your sad cherry tree. I definitely see signs of gummosis and some pretty severe bark damage. As cherries do not do well in our area without a pretty severe spray schedule, I think this tree is probably a goner.

I do have a pie cherry with gummosis that I have let limp a long for a few years since I get enough for about 2 pies a year, but it doesn't have nearly the bark damage I see in your picture. Perhaps a fig or persimmon tree would be less stressful.
So sorry there's not a lot you can do for this poor tree.
Rhonda Frick-Wright Replied December 01, 2022, 12:31 AM EST
Thank you Rhonda. Sigh. We do have two fig trees already. They are young. Do you have a good pruning guide for fig trees?

Also, do you think it would be worth it to try to cut out the bad parts of the cherry tree, use some spray (we have not been spraying) and see what happens?


Sent from my iPhone

On Nov 30, 2022, at 9:31 PM, Ask Extension <> wrote:

The Question Asker Replied December 04, 2022, 10:21 AM EST
Hi Dan- You can always try the drastic cherry cutting idea, but the gummosis is systemic and won't be "cut out." Like you, I love the idea of growing my own cherries, but right now the Willamette Valley is just not the right place. Maybe someday there will be a cultivar...

As to the fig pruning, I'm attaching an article but you will have to skip down to the bottom to find the pruning advice. We usually prune ours in late January or February. Just think of them more as a bush than as a tree so you get 6 or 7 main stems and keep them at a reasonable height for picking. The fruit comes on the one year old and new growth, so it's fine to take out the older branches once they are established. Last year we got so many figs I couldn't even give them away. Now if only they tasted like cherries...

Rhonda Frick-Wright Replied December 05, 2022, 2:26 PM EST

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