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Hort in the Home Landscape

A blog devoted to sharing timely horticulture topics and answering the questions of gardeners and homeowners.
2015-04-12 01 41 00

Plant of the Week: Cherry Trees


Last weekend I had the privelege of visiting a friend in Washington D.C and it just so happens to have been the same time that the cherry trees were blooming! It was a beautiful site. This week's plant of the week has to be Cherry Trees (Prunus sp.) of course then!

Prior to my visit, I didn't know the history of why so many cherry trees were in D.C. in the first place. Turns out, the plantings of cherry trees originated in 1912 as a gift of friendship to the People of the United States from the People of Japan. Learn more about the history of the Cherry Trees in DC here. Cuttings have been taken from some of the original 3,020 trees that were planted in 1912, so the same genetic material still remains. Pretty cool!

Various species of Prunus appear along the tidal basin in D.C., but many of these would not be quite cold hardy enough to do well for us farther north. Here in Illinois, the Sargent Cherry (Prunus sargentii) would be a good choice to replicate that flowering beauty. The Sargent Cherry has nice pink flowers in the spring with the added benefit of bring less prone to some of the common problems that the Prunus genus encounters and it tends to be longer lived (30-50 years). It's also hardy to zone 5a which is great for us here in Northern Illinois.

 



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