Prunus serrulata - Oriental Cherry
Family: Rosaceae

Hear the scientific name

Prunus serrulata is a popular flower tree because of its dramatic display of flowers in the spring. Japanese Flowering Cherry is a relatively short-lived plant in the landscape because of numerous pest and disease problems. The cultivar 'Kwanzan' (or 'Kanzan') is the most popular and cold hardy of many cultivars that can be grown in Western countries.

F   E   A   T   U   R   E   S
  form2 form Form

-vase-shaped to rounded outline

-deciduous tree

-the species is a large tree growing 50-75' tall; but mainly grown from numerous cultivars which grow 20-25'

-the form of the cultivars varies

foliage2 foliage Foliage

-alternate, simple, elliptical shape (2-5" long x 1-2.5" wide), serrated margins, shiny, reddish brown or bronze when unfolding, lustrous dark green above and pale green below in summer

-autumn color is often a good bronze to subdued red

-petioles have obvious glands


-for the species, the flowers are greatly variable but range from single to doubles, white to pinks, and from 0.5-2.5" in diameter; they usually flower in Apr. to early May

-borne profusely along the stems, usually before or with the leaves


-rare to none


-thin, reddish brown and lenticelled

trunk Trunk

-bark is thin, smooth, reddish to bronze, glossy with very prominent horizontal lenticels

C   U   L   T   U   R   E


-full sun to partial sun

-prefers damp, well-drained, fertile soils but will tolerate others; especially of variable pH

-does not tolerate poor drainage

-the cultivar 'Kwanzan' is cold hardy and tolerates heat and humidity


-zones 5 (6) to 8


-native to Japan

U   S   A   G   E


-dramatic floral display

-variable form (depending on cultivar)

-soil adaptable


-several potential diseases and pests, as is typical of most Rose Family members

-aphids, spider mites, caterpillars, and pear slugs

-relatively short-lived because of the large number of pests that will attack the tree

-many cultivars are not cold hardy in zone 5 ('Kwanzan' is the most cold hardy)


-specimen, massing, foundation, border, or entranceway ornamental tree


-medium texture in foliage and when bare

-open density in foliage and when bare

S   E   L   E   C   T   I   0   N   S

Varieties and Cultivars - Search OSU PlantFacts for additional plants in this species


-early- to mid-Spring-flowering ornamental trees (Amelanchier, Cornus florida, Malus, Prunus subhirtella, Pyrus calleryana, etc.)

-weeping or cascading flowering trees or large shrubs


Press the Back button in your browser.