My Sweet Cherry Tree is dying!

This is a sweet cherry, Black Star, from Schlabach. It was planted in the soring of 2014. It is on Krymsk 5. It grew very well. Last year, it had a few blooms but no fruit set.

Last year, I grafted a few varieties on it and those grafts grew like weeds. This year, I grafted a few more and they all took. I hoped to turn it into a multi- grafted tree. The tree had several more blooms.

Then, a couple of weeks ago, I noticed that the leaves started to wilt. The tree has stopped growing. It has been like that for the past two weeks. By contrast, the Black Gold is flourishing.

I do not know what has caused its demise. My guess is that it could be that the area has been wet once in a while when it rains hard. There is no standing water. Also, only 5 feet away is the Black Gold.

Maybe, Krymsk 5 is not that good. Who knows?

Black Gold in the foreground. The dying Black Star behind it.

Don’t think it will recover, unfortunately.

@tonyOmahaz5, you are one of a few that has the scionwood of this variety from me.

1 Like

An Amish farmer in PA told me last year that cherries on Krymsk.5 have proven susceptible to bacterial canker. It is advised to prune/graft them minimally.

My sole tree on K.5, Whitegold, is one of the best looking trees in my orchard.

Sorry to hear that Mamuang, my Kristen sweet cherry up and died suddenly same time last year. Never did find any evidence as to why, it looked great up until it died.

Now that you told me :disappointed:

I had about 10 grafts on it. Oh well.

@Klondike_Mike, Sorry about your loss, too.
I said it many times that in my yard, cherry is the only fruit that produces fruit that is inferior to store-bought.

Well. Glad that I have not grafted too many on Black Gold. But that one is on Gisela 5. Not sure if I want to try another Krymsk on anything.

I have wondered why Gisela roots are never for sale. Maybe hard to root?
I am sorry for your losses. That is a heartbreak.

My K5 cherries all died after a rainy period. Bacterial canker was in the rootstock. You could see it just below the graft union.

Sorry to see yours may be the same.

Thank you, Quill. I am more miffed than sad for losing 3 full years with nothing in return.

I had two cherry trees on Gisela 5. One I removed because of the variety, not because of rootstock. I like Gisela 5 very much, very cold hardy and so far, hardly has any canker ( knock on wood).

The Gisela stocks are thought to be the best for cherries in the Eastern U.S.

The problem is they are German bred and there are only a limited number of authorized propagators in the U.S.

Compounding that-- the commercial orchardists get first pick and often buy out the stock in bulk before the backyard orchardists have a chance to get 'em.

On occassion, Cummins, Adams County, and Boyer’s stocks them. You have to pester Boyer periodically. They rarely bother even to announce they have them. Their clients gobble them up. Lately, Raintree has also found a way to get them.

Raintree has put cherry trees on Gisela for a while now. Mine came from Raintree in 2010.


The winds blew off some of the tags of my multi grafted sweet cherry tree. I think the Big Star is there but I don’t know which grafts.


On what tree you grafted all your cherries to?

It is aBlack Star, not Big Star. I gave you the wrong name whenI sent you the scion.

I grafted it on a Rainer tree with Sandra Rose(tag intact), Vandalay( lost tag), Black star (lost tag), White gold (tag intact) , Black gold(lost tag), and Van (tag intact) .


Black Gold and Vandalay look alike to me. Don’t know what Black Star looks like. It would have set fruit this year.

I had Bing, Stella, Sweet Heart, Black Tartarian, Black Pearl and White Gold on that dying tree. I tried to rescue the Black Pearl and White Gold by removing the grafts to another cherry tree. Those grafts have already leafed out. We’ll see if they can be saved.

It is very sad to loose a multi grafted tree because of the multiple varieties and time to nature them.


1 Like

definitely, losing a multi grafted tree does hurt a lot.

This is my second multi grafted tree. Two years ago, I lost a multi- grafted peach tree with 5-7 varieties on it.

1 Like

May be this is a red flag? May be multi-grafting is not the best thing for the tree health?

Sorry your tree didn’t make it. But it will live on as part of my Black Gold. The scions you sent me last year grew very well. No fruit this year but maybe next.

Not sure. I think a lot have to do with types of fruit trees, rootstocks, timing and weather. have seen multi grafted apple trees last a long time.

My PF1 peach was severely pruned the summer before going into a severe cold winter. That was the most probable cause. Severe pruning in late summer could have weakened the tree making it more vulnerable to extreme weather.

Per @Matt_in_Maryland, this time it was a rootstock.

But I definitely will be more careful about what tree I will multi graft and when to do major pruning.