Nanking cherries are hardy bush cherries ideally suited to harsh growing conditions. Besides producing beautiful white blossoms in the spring, Nanking cherries reliably provide cherry harvests here in Alaska. Nanking cherries are smaller than normal cherries, with a larger pit, but contain the same cherry flavor and most of the sweetness of full-sized cherries. Excellent for syrups, jams, and wine.
Plant Nanking cherries 6-8 feet apart in a sunny location. You should plant more than one Nanking to ensure good pollination. Nanking cherries will produce runners, so your bushes will quickly fill in. Dig an 18” square hole, fill with soil and compost and plant the tree at the same level it was grown in the nursery. Water well and apply mulch or weed consistently.
Care and harvest
Most Nanking cherries will start producing in their third year, and production will increase with time. Harvest cherries just as they start to ripen or add bird netting and wait until cherries reach peak ripeness.
Birds and wildlife love cherries. Surround cherry bushes with bird netting to prevent loss of cherries.