Prunus 'North Star'
Common Name: sour cherry 
Type: Fruit
Family: Rosaceae
Zone: 4 to 8
Height: 7.00 to 9.00 feet
Spread: 8.00 to 10.00 feet
Bloom Time: April
Bloom Description: White
Sun: Full sun
Water: Medium
Maintenance: Low
Suggested Use: Flowering Tree
Flower: Showy, Fragrant
Attracts: Birds, Butterflies
Fruit: Showy, Edible


Grow in average, medium moisture, well drained soil in full sun. Prefers moisture-retentive soils with good drainage. No tolerance for wet soils. Best sited in a sheltered location where periodic chemical spraying will not pose problems to adjacent areas. Plant 10' apart. Self-pollinating.

Noteworthy Characteristics

Prunus is a genus of about 200 species of deciduous and evergreen trees and shrubs found in north temperate areas, the Andes of South America and in mountainous areas of Southeast Asia. Some are grown for their showy flowers, colorful foliage and/or attractive bark; and others for fruit, which includes cherry, plum, apricot, nectarine and peach.

'North Star' is a dwarf cherry cultivar which typically grows only 7-9' tall and produces one crop per year of large, bright red, sour cherries with red flesh. Cherries ripen in June (USDA Zone 5). Cherries are recommended for pies. White blossoms in spring.


This cultivar is reportedly disease resistant. However, potential disease problems include leaf spot, bacterial canker, brown rot, black knot, crown gall, leaf curl, leaf scorch, powdery mildew, root rot, scab and shot-hole fungus. Potential insect pests include aphids, fruit flies, saw flies and scale. Netting or nylon mesh can be used, if necessary, to prevent birds from stealing the crop. Cold winter temperatures and spring frosts can cause significant injury to buds/flowers, almost to the same extent as with peaches.


Grown primarily for the fruit crop and not for ornamental value. This self-pollinating dwarf cherry is ideal for smaller spaces.