I find sour cherries simply delightful to eat fresh off the tree, despite any reputation otherwise. If too tart for your taste buds, don’t fret; they can be put to a hundred other delicious uses in cooking, baking, drying, preserving, etc. Sour cherries are large and can be easily pitted with any version of standard cherry pitters. Sour cherries share the spotlight with pears as the easiest to produce of the traditional tree fruits in the Midwest without any sprays (though birds can be a problem, eating the crop as soon as it ripens). Sour cherries will even tolerate little to no pruning if that sounds like a daunting task to you. A sour cherry in bloom is a stunning sight, and has a nice natural growth form. Grafted onto Mazzard seedling rootstock, which does better in heavy wet soils than Mahaleb. gallon pot* $16 +tax
Pollination: All sour cherries are fully self-fertile.
‘Nanking Bush Cherry seedling Cherry, Sour (Prunus tomentosa): We hesitated to offer these bush cherries for years, assuming that no-one would want to bother with a hard-seeded fruit too small to pit. However, after interacting with our plants the last few years, we now see their value as a delightful out-of-hand snack and a plant that will thrive under utter neglect. It is one also one of the first things to bloom in the spring, only preceded by our apricot tree. The glossy, slightly peeling, reddish-brown bark provides interest even in the winter. The bushes reach 8’ high if unpruned and about 6’ wide. Can grow and even fruit in shade, though more fruit is produced in full sun. Somewhat self-fertile, but really best with a second plant as a pollinator (these are seedlings so any two plants should work). Our seedlings have some white- and pink-fruiting individuals in the mix but will be mostly red. Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Balaton' Cherry, Sour : Late-June. Morello-type. Sweeter, larger fruit, with extended ripening period. Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Sumadinka' Cherry, Sour : mid-July. Morello-type. Very early bloomer. Another natural dwarf, staying more compact than Montmorency but slightly larger than Northstar. Supposedly more productive than North Star, with darker colored fruit especially good for eating fresh. Space 8’-12’ apart. Self fertile Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Montmorency' Cherry, Sour : mid-July. Amarelle-type (yellow flesh, clear juice). A well-known and time-tested variety which is still grown commercially. Very similar to ‘Northstar’, but tree grows larger (16’) and is more vigorous. Space 12-16’ apart. Self fertile Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Northstar' Cherry, Sour : July. Morello-type (red flesh, red juice). A natural dwarf, reaching only 8-10’ at maturity. Cherries are large and bright red. ‘Northstar’ is a perfect edible landscaping plant due to it’s small size, low care and beautiful blooms and fruit. Space 8-10’ apart. Self fertile Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Carmine Jewel' Cherry, Sour : August. (dark red flesh and juice) We are VERY excited about this newer offering. It is a natural (non-GMO) hybrid cross between sour cherries and bush cherries, which gives it a very manageable size (6-8' tall) and great disease and insect resistance. AND it is SWEET - great for fresh eating. Very productive. Fruit keeps well on the bush, provided you protect it from birds and neighborhood kids :). Best flavor is reached a few weeks after the fruits turn red - they're not really ripe until they are dark red-black. Self fertile Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
While sweet cherries are savored by everyone for their meaty, rich and juicy flesh, they are more difficult to grow without synthetic sprays than sour cherries. The fruit is prone to brown rot, often starting on split fruits. Insect pests (and birds) are also drawn to the fruitlets. Sweet cherries in southern IN sometimes miss a crop from blooming too early and having the blossoms killed by heavy frost. We have sought varieties and rootstocks that will give you the best chance of success in our region. Grafted on Krymsk 5 which is a vigorous, early bearing, semi-dwarfing rootstock for cherries. It performs incredibly well in poor, heavy clay soils and can be kept at 12-15’ for easier picking! Space sweet cherries 15’ apart. gallon pot* $16 +tax
Pollination: ‘Sam’ and ‘Gold’ need another variety for pollination. Any of our sweet cherries are compatible pollenizers.
‘Sam' Cherry, Sweet : Early season (early July). Very dark, almost black fruit with a deeper flavor than other sweet cherries. Blooms late. Resistant to cracking and bacterial canker. Zone 5-9 Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Gold' Cherry, Sweet : Mid season (mid July). It is believed that birds will not bother sweet cherries that are fully yellow when ripe, and 'Gold' is just that! Apparently even the blushed varieties like Emperor Francis can be prone to bird predation. This is an easy to grow large gold cherry that is cold hardy and a good pollinator for other varieties. Supposedly resistant to brown rot and fruit cracking. Zone 5-8 Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘Lapins' Cherry, Sweet : Late season (late July). Self-fertile sweet cherry with dark red, crack-resistant fruit. Good pollinator for other varieties. Precocious fruiter. Zone 5-8 Full Sun to Part Shade. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
Most European and Japanese plums are extremely prone to insect and disease problems in the Midwest. However, many of our customers still ask for them so we have decided to offer a few varieties that supposedly have more resistance to fruit rots. European plums tend to have a more upright growth habit like pears, while Japanese plums are more spreading like a peach tree. Grafted onto Myrobalan 29-C which makes a full-sized (15-25’ tall x wide) tree that is very tolerant of wet soils and is resistant to various plum root diseases. Space 15’-20’ apart. gallon pot* $16, 2-gal pot* $26 +tax
‘METHLEY' Plum, Asian : Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘SATSUMA' Plum, Asian : Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘SHIRO' Plum, Asian : Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘SENECA' Plum, European : Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
‘STANLEY' Plum, European : Full Sun. Size & Price: gallon* pots $16; 2-gal* pots $26 +tax
American Plum (Prunus Americana) : These seedling trees are extremely disease-resistant and set bumper crops of golf-ball sized fruit every two years. In between years get a smaller crop. The fruit is red-skinned and yellow fleshed and glows when the sunlight hits it! It is delicious eaten straight off the tree with a slight astringency that comes through delightfully in wine made from these fruits. The roots will sucker so if you do not mow around them, they will eventually form a clonal “grove” of plums for you! quart pot $6, gallon pot* $12, +tax OUT OF STOCK
*size designations are nominal. We use “trade gallons” (which are slightly less than a gallon) as well as recycled pots that may vary in exact size. There are a limited number of two gallon plants available – first come first serve.