Meteor Tart Cherry TreeThe Meteor Tart cherry tree (Prunus cerasus ‘Meteor’) is one of the most sought-after fruit-bearing trees, renowned for its vibrant allure and tantalizing taste. With an upright, rounded growth habit, this deciduous tree belongs to the Rosaceae family and typically reaches a height of 15 to 20 feet (4.5 to 6 meters). During the growing season, it forms an attractive symmetrical canopy of lush green foliage marked by serrated leaves. It produces fragrant white blossoms in spring, which attract pollinators and facilitate fruit development. In addition to its small to medium size, this variety boasts a distinctively tart flavor, which adds zest to an array of culinary creations, including pies, jams, tarts, and beverages. The Meteor tart cherry tree demonstrates a robust adaptability to varying climates, excelling in temperate regions characterized by cold winters, which trigger the necessary winter chilling period for flowering. The key to its successful cultivation is adequate sunlight, well-drained soil, and proper spacing. Additionally, routine pruning promotes a healthy canopy and improves air circulation, reducing disease risks. Handpicking ripe fruit is often possible due to the tree’s manageable size. Whether used in culinary preparations or decorative arrangements, Meteor tart cherries add tangy flavor to a variety of dishes.
- Hardiness Zones: 4-8
- Pollination: Self Pollinating
- Disease Resistance: Good
- Harvest Period: one week behind the Montmorency
How to Water Meteor Tart Cherry Tree
- Water your tree with a garden hose or a watering can.
- Water the tree deeply when you see the soil has dried out.
- Additionally, water the tree slowly and evenly all around the root zone.
- In fact, avoid splashing the leaves with water, as this can cause fungal diseases.
- Let the soil dry out between waterings.
- Mulch around the base of the tree in order to help retain moisture and reduce weed growth.
- Lastly, provide supplemental water during periods of drought or dry weather.
- Follow this link for more detailed instructions on how to water a fruit tree.
Planting and Caring for a Meteor Tart Cherry Tree
- Choose a sunny spot in your yard that is sheltered from the wind. Make sure the soil is well-draining.
- For dwarf trees, space 6 to 8 feet apart, for semi-dwarf trees about 15 feet, and for standard or full-sized trees about 25 feet.
- Dig a hole twice as wide and just as deep as the root ball of your tree.
- Remove the tree from the container and place it in the hole. Make sure the top of the root ball is level with the soil.
- Backfill the hole with the soil you removed earlier and pat it down firmly.
- Water the tree deeply and mulch the area around the trunk in a 3-4 inch layer.
- Prune the branches to the desired shape and size.
- Feed the tree with a fertilizer designed for fruit trees.
- Watch your Meteor tart cherry tree thrive in its happy home.
- For more detailed instruction on how to plant a cherry tree, follow this article.
What is a Rootstock?A rootstock controls the tree’s size, precocity, cold hardiness, and partly its disease resistance (such as fireblight). In order to grow a reliable and high quality fruit tree, growers graft the scion, which is above the ground and responsible for the fruit’s characteristics and disease resistance, onto the rootstock, which is underground.
How to Choose a Rootstock?A rootstock that grows well in one location, may not grow well in another. Therefore you must consider your specific site considerations before choosing a rootstock. When choosing a rootstock, some considerations for growers are
- what size tree is optimal for your site
- how well the rootstock adapts to your soil
- the disease pressure on your site
- how well the rootstock anchors
- precocity (bearing fruit at a younger age)
How to Prune a Meteor Tart Cherry Tree?For more detailed instruction on how to prune fruit trees, follow this article.
- First, prune the Meteor Tart cherry tree in late winter or early spring, before it begins to flower.
- Cut off any dead, diseased, or damaged branches.
- Remove any crossing, upright, and downward branches, leaving branches that grow outward.
- Prune to an open center or modified central leader shape.
- Cut back branches that are too long or have grown too close to the ground.
- Cherry trees bear fruit on one-year-old wood, so it’s essential to encourage new growth. Therefore. remove some of the older branches to promote the growth of younger branches. Look for spurs, which are stubby branches with fruiting buds, and avoid pruning them excessively.
- Thin out the branches to allow more air and light to penetrate the center of the tree.
- Remove any suckers (new shoots growing from the base of the tree)
- Lastly, prune with a smile on your face and enjoy the beauty of your tree!