Re: Cherry Trees from seed?

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Posted by Newt on June 19, 2003 at 07:20:06:

In Reply to: Re: Cherry Trees from seed? posted by Star Theodore on June 18, 2003 at 19:31:45:

: .
: :
: : Hi Christie,
: : Here you go!
: :
: Newt

: Hi Newt, I tried your link, and it wouldn't work. Is there another way to get there? I too want to sprout a pit. The one in my mouth preferably. LOL. That cherry was fantastic.

Hi Star,
You have my mouth watering! I tried the link and it worked fine for me, so I don't know what's up with that. Here's a copy of the site and another link that should be helpful too. Let me know if that one doesn't work for you.

"Growing New Fruit Tree Plants From Seed


Many people mistakenly believe that fruit trees come true to name from seeds.
In reality if you collect seed from a fruit grown on a plant these seeds will
produce plants that will be a hybrid of two plants. The new plant will be the
same kind of plant, but its fruit and vegetative portions may not look the
same as the parent, because the plant is "heterozygous." Therefore, all fruit
trees must be vegetatively propagated by either grafting or budding methods.

Grafting and budding require that you have a compatible rootstock or mother
plant onto which you can attach your desired variety. An inexpensive way to
obtain a seedling rootstock is to collect seeds from the type of plant you are
propagating. This sheet gives a simple method to help germinate seeds to
produce grafting rootstocks.

The seeds of all common tree fruits (apple, pear, peach, and cherry) require a
chilling period before they will germinate and form new plants. The chilling
period occurs after the fruit portion is ripe. This period is known as either
dormancy or after ripening. During this period the embryo develops until it
is mature. This is accomplished by subjecting the seeds to a cold treatment.

There are two systems whereby the necessary after ripening could be

Method 1 - Out of Doors : Prepare a garden-soil plot in the fall as you
would for planting any other type of seeds. Make a furrow that is no more
than 1-2 times deeper than the longest dimension of the seed. Cover the seeds
with a light cover of soil and add an inch or two of sand over the row. The
sand will prevent crusting of the soil which inhibits germination.

Next, place wire screen, or hardware cloth, over the row -- be sure all the
edges are pushed down into the soil several inches and the ends are closed.
This prevents chipmunks and squirrels from digging up the seeds'

The following April watch the seeded area closely for newly germinated
seedlings. As they grow, remove the wire-screen to prevent restriction of the
new plants. (see Handling in Nursery, below)

Method 2 - Refrigerator: Extract seeds and/or pits from the fruit of which
you wish to reproduce new plants. Remove all adhering fruit portions and
allow seeds to air dry. Then, place them in a glass jar or other suitable
container to which a loosely fitted lid or cover may be added. Set the seeds
aside in a cool place until mid-January.

Mix the seeds in mid-January) with either moist (not wet) peat moss, sand or
shredded paper towels. Return mixture to the container and replace lid. Place
container and seeds in the refrigerator until after the last severe spring
frosts. The seeds should remain in the refrigerator for at least 60 days. In
early April prepare a garden-soil seedbed, with furrows as described above,
and plant the seeds. Keep the soil moist but not wet. No fertilizer should be

Handling in the Nursery: When the plants are 6 to 8 inches tall, apply 1 to 2
tablespoonful of urea along each 12 inches of row in a band on one side of the
seedlings. Keep the fertilizer about 3 inches away from the seedlings. Water
thoroughly every 10 to 12 days.

The new seedling has a taproot. To facilitate transplanting we suggest you
cut the taproot by pushing a spade under each plant. The spade should be
pushed into the soil to cut the taproot about 5-6 inches below the surface.

Peach, nectarine, almond and apricot seedlings may be budded the first summer,
usually in late July or early August. Apple, cherries, pear and plum should
be allowed to grow through to the July-August period of the second year before
budding is done. Apple and pear are the only tree fruit plants which the home
gardener may expect to bench graft with success. The peach-cherry plum group
are very difficult to propagate by any other means than budding. The budding
and grafting procedures are described in Pa. Agr. Extension Special Circular
153, entitled "Methods of Grafting" available through the Agricultural
Extension office in your county."

Dr. Robert M. Crassweller
Professor of Tree Fruit

You could also try doing a search at and put in quotes with a plus sign like this: "cherry" + "grow" + "seed" or substitute "propagate" for "grow".

Hope this is helpful.

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Special thanks to Jane and Bob Rosi for providing this information.

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