Ragouminier (Prunus Tomentosa), Nanjing Cherry

Ragouminier (Prunus tomentosa), Nanjing cherry

The ragouminier is a cherry tree of modest size, bushy, which comes from Asia and is very rustic since it supports the gel at -20° C. In addition, it gives edible fruits, and it is rather pretty with its abundant flowering, so it finds more and more its place in the gardens of all natures and all sizes. It is also known as the Canadian Dwarf Cherry. Its growth is rather slow: it reaches adult maturity only after five years.

Its leaves are deciduous, alternate, oval and downy, even rough, up to 7 cm long, with slightly serrated edges. The bark is rather smooth and dark, almost black.

In spring, the flowering is very abundant with small white or pale pink fragrant flowers with 5 petals measuring about 2 cm in diameter, which are united in umbels.

Behind the honey flowers, fruits are formed directly on the wood, without petioles, from the beginning of summer. These drupes are bright red and are around 1 to 1.5 cm in diameter. Cherries are edible, without acidity and juicy, they are eaten fresh or cooked in jellies, jams...

  • Family: Rosaceae
  • Type: fruit tree
  • Origin: China, Tibet, Korea
  • Color: white flowers or pale pink
  • Sowing: yes
  • Cutting: no
  • Planting: autumn
  • Flowering: March-April
  • Height: 2 m maximum

Ideal soil and exposure for the ragouminier

The cherry tree of Nanjing is grown in full sun, in a well-drained soil, neither limestone nor clay, rather sandy. For a plantation in pot, put a layer of gravel at the bottom of the pot to ensure good drainage.

Date of sowing and planting of the ragouminier

It is in the spring that you will be able to try the sowing of the ragouminier with laminated seeds a few months in the cold, but arm yourself with patience! The suckering is much more efficient to multiply it: you will separate the suckers in the autumn, ideal season for the planting of this tree.

Board of maintenance and cultivation of the ragouminier

When planting, water generously then very regularly the 2 or 3 years after planting. A contribution of compost in the fall is beneficial.

The size is only to keep a nice silhouette, to remove the dead branches and to lighten the center of the antlers so that air and light penetrate well.

Harvesting, conservation and use of the ragouminier

The fruits are harvested at the beginning of summer depending on the climate. You can eat them fresh or make compotes, clafoutis, jellies, jams.

Diseases, pests and parasites of ragouminier

The cherry tree of Nanjing is not a very delicate fruit bush, except the aphids that can invade and sometimes the monilia that can settle.

Location and favorable association of the ragouminier

It is a shrub that can be planted in vats, on a terrace, given its small size, or isolated in the orchard, but it is also wonderful for a varied and mixed country hedge. It is also popular with bonsai lovers.

There are cultivars but you will find in gardening essentially the species-type 'Prunus tomentosa'.

(photo by Ruslan V.Albitsky aka pauk - Digimax Samsung A502, CC BY-SA 2.5)

Video: Planter le prunus tomentosa en pot.

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