Cherry tree dead or alive


I had this great cherry tree in florida until we had a freeze. It died, i think, but i saw some growth on the trunk. All of the limbs were dry and snapped off. Is it possible its still alive?

I am not a cherry tree expert - more of a novice but that does not look like a cherry tree to me. What variety cherry is it?

1 Like

Scratch underneath the bark. Green=alive. Brown=dead.

1 Like

Surinam cherry? (Acerola?)

1 Like

The tree itself is alive, and I think it’s likely that many of the larger branches will start to put out new growth. If the tree weren’t alive you wouldn’t see that green on it.

You can always take it out later if I’m wrong!

2 Likes

I agree with Mark the main trunk is hardier than the branches.

1 Like

FWIW, I doubt that any freeze Florida would see would be cold enough to kill a cherry tree.

2 Likes

Good point.

This is 100% not a cherry tree (nor Prunus avium neither Prunus cerasus). Perhaps some tropical tree that has “cherry” in its name (like Surinam cherry proposed above by @BlueBerry; I don’t have any experience with these plants, so cannot identify it).

3 Likes

Stan, just an ‘educated guess’ on my part, I am not certain. But if it’s Surinam cherry…it’s a tropical plant. Not as hardy as your average orange or grapefruit. You are correct it isn’t anything anyone in zones 4-6 would call a cherry tree.

3 Likes

Dont know what kind of cherry tree it is but…its 100% a cherry tree. I have eaten cherries off the tree. they look like bing cherries. Freezing is freezing, and its get below 32f every year in florida.

@Johnfin, what part of Florida are you in?? I’ve never seen cherry trees anywhere down here, so I’m curious to know what variety it might be…any pictures of the fruit?

1 Like

Well thats a matter of perspective. My wife would agree with you. This is the only Cherry tree she ever grew up with and they just called it cherry. But the majority of the rest of us identify cherries as members of the prunus family and 32f not only means nothing to a Bing type cherry they need several weeks of 32 degree weather to be happy. Anyway a close up of the leaves show they look nothing like a Prunus Cherry but very much like that of the Barbados Cherry(Acerola) or Surinam Cherry. Your discretion of the shape indicates its a Acerola. Anyway both are very cold sensitve. The regrowth likely indicates the tree will survive this time. As soon as your able to determin which branches are dead you should remove them.

3 Likes

It might be a 100% capulin cherry. The trunk is more like it and the tiny leaves growing. Some cultivars of Capulin are susceptible to freezes especially if the temperature decline is dramatic. If it is gradual, they can be hardy down to 27 deg F, if not, light frosts can form even at 36 deg F on clear moonless nights and it can kill off the top limbs. If it has been a lot higher than freezing days before and overnight, there’s a freezing event even at slightly below 32F, they don’t have time to harden and most limbs die back.

And if it tastes like Bing, please send me a lot of seeds from it later on when it bears fruits! Many capulin cultivars that I have tasted looked like Bing cherries, and the same texture and dark colors too, but then it has somewhat resinous flavor that has become a turn-off to many people. No researchers here that I know are actively selecting for better tasting cultivars. And it is one of the potential cherries that really don’t require chilling hours and if ever, might be lower than 50 hrs. It is a tropical prunus, P. serotina. Should be good for coastal areas, and areas that don’t have a lot of chilling hours.

1 Like

More pictures might help. But a look at the bark on the tree tells me it’s not like a pie cherry from Michigan, nor a Bing cherry from Washington, nor a wild black cherry from Kentucky, nor a flowering cherry from Japan.
Has to be tropical lit would seem. Barbados, Brizilian, Surinam? Your “organic” forms of vitamin C come from either rose hips or acerola cherries from the Caribbean area. The trunk of the tree that was posted appeared to be Surinam cherry, which is spreading in Florida and some consider an invasive plant. But, if the fruit more resembles a cherry from the supermarket in the USA then it may be the acerola (Barbados) cherry.

I don’t believe it is a Prunus species at all, the closest bark I’ve seen would be prunus lusitanica. I still think we’re dealing with a tropical “cherry”. Until somebody proves otherwise.

For reference, here’s Prunus serotina, or Capulin cherry.

http://www.wschsgrf.org/farm-walking-tour/13

1 Like

I live in winter haven, fl. Seeing in believing.

P.s. its NOT a Surinam cherry tree.

Fruit totally looks like cherry - leaves don’t at all

1 Like

More pics
Imgur