Cherry trees are prized for their beautiful spring flowers and colourful fall foliage. Although there are many types of cherry trees, the ornamental flowering varieties such as the Japanese cherry, Kwanzan cherry and Yoshino cherry are among the most popular. Cherry trees require extra care because they are susceptible to a number of pests and diseases.
According to the University of Florida Extension, aphids are a particular problem for cherry trees. Aphids eat leaves and secrete a substance called honeydew that encourages the growth of black fungus. Other common pests include various kinds of scale and borers, spider mites and carpenter worms. Tent caterpillars often build weblike nests in the branches and strip leaves from the tree.
Cherry trees are prone to leaf spot, a fungus causing dark spots and premature yellowing of leaves. Other common diseases include powdery mildew and black knot, a disease causing black galls on the branches. Shot hole is a bacterial infection that causes dry spots and holes in the leaves.
Care of Cherry Trees
Cherry trees should be well-fertilised and deeply watered to promote vigorous growth and resistance to disease. Trees must be pruned regularly to remove dead or diseased branches and to promote good air circulation.