Why No Blossoms on My Flowering Cherry Tree?

Flowering cherry trees -- from traditional cherry trees like the Bing, to ornamental trees like the snow fountain weeping cherry tree -- are prized for their attractive, fragrant blossoms. Healthy cherry trees produce blossoms annually; a failure to produce blooms is a sign of a health problem. Determine the cause of the problem to ensure the return of flowers the following spring.

...
Cherry trees produce showy blossoms when healthy.

Frost Damage

Weather damage to a flowering cherry tree has the potential to prevent it from putting out flowers in the spring, especially if the damage occurs in the spring. A late frost or snowfall can kill off the buds and early blossoms, keeping the flowering cherry tree from blooming; pruning damaged portions of the flowering cherry encourages healthy growth to emerge, and can help provide a place for flowers to bloom despite the weather damage.

Drought

Drought conditions can cause a flowering cherry to conserve energy and fail to put out flowers in the spring. A lack of water in the early spring keeps the cherry tree dormant and dehydrated, which limits its ability to flower or bloom. Water the cherry tree weekly beginning in the early spring, especially if natural rainfall is scarce. Keep the soil around the base of the flowering cherry tree moist to encourage growth and blossoming.

Disease

Fungal diseases are a serious threat to flowering cherry trees; over time, if undetected, fungi can weaken a flowering cherry tree from the inside out, eventually causing the tree to stop growing. Fungal diseases have the potential to stop a cherry tree from producing blossoms as it destroys the tree. Keep the soil around the tree from holding standing water, which promotes fungal growth, and apply a fungicide to the flowering cherry tree to kill existing spores.

Pruning

A failure to prune a flowering cherry tree can lead to a failure to have showy blooms in the spring. Pruning helps keep the flowering cherry tree healthy by removing problematic branches and allowing each branch to have enough space and nutrients to produce blossoms in the spring. Prune the flowering cherry tree in the early spring to limit the damage caused by pruning, and remove any dead or damaged branches from the tree.