Sweet Cherry suddenly wilting

I have a Kristin sweet cherry that we planted last year that seemed to be doing OK. Then suddenly ALL of the leaves are wilting. It looks like someone stuck a torch next to it. I have seen similar on a sour cherry, but only a few twigs/growth. NOT the entire tree.

I live on MA/NH border. Tree was purchased from a nursery 5 hours north of here, so I don’t think its the weather.

Any ideas ?

BTW: Thanks to all you that helped me with peach brown rot a few years ago !!


It could be brown rot blossom blight. Or something with the roots. Too much water? Whatever it is? It looks very bad sad to say.

Do u mean it needs water ? The other trees seem OK. We’ve not had rain in a few weeks, but had a pretty wet april.

Usually that’s wet soil or winter freeze injury. I have seen it from bacterial canker that hit the rootstock and thus killed the tree. Someone once said that sweet cherries look for ways to die.


A few years ago, my 2nd year cherry tree leafed out for a few weeks, started wilting and died. I suspected verticillium wilt or some type of soil-borne issue.

This past winter, it was mild. I do not suspect winter kill.
What happened to your tree sounded very similar to mine.

Agree with @fruitnut, cherry and apricot trees often find a way to die.

One of my 8 years year old multi grafted sweet cherry died due to canker this Spring. I wonder if you have the same problem.

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Yes it looks like it needs water; or it has had too much. If it just went in at least a gallon a day.


My unknown “Soil and Water Tree Program” cherry did that last spring right after it bloomed. As it began to leaf out it wilted and died. It suckered and I have kept 2 strong leaders to choose from for future grafting or to just let grow. The trunk of your tree looks dead and may even show signs of fungal growth which could have been the problem or a response to the dead wood.

I had the exact same thing happen to my Kristen sweet cherry a few years back. It was on it’s 4th or 5th leaf, seemed to be thriving, and then up and died very rapidly.

Thanks to all who replied !