Environment Planet Earth An Introduction to the Kwanzan Cherry Tree By Steve Nix Steve Nix Writer University of Georgia Steve Nix is a member of the Society of American Foresters and a former forest resources analyst for the state of Alabama. Learn about our editorial process Updated October 7, 2019 Share Twitter Pinterest Email Mathisa_s/Getty Images Planet Earth Outdoors Weather Conservation Kwanzan cherry has double-pink, beautiful flowers and is usually purchased and planted for this reason. The upright-spreading form, reaching 15 to 25 feet tall, is quite attractive in many locations including near a patio or as a specimen away from lawn grass competition. The tree makes beautiful flowers and is planted along with Yoshino cherry in Washington, D.C., and Macon, Georgia for their annual Cherry Blossom Festivals. This cherry provides a strong contrast to lighter-colored cherry blossoms, like Yoshino cherry, by showing a pink flower later in April and May. It becomes a larger part of the cherry show as spring introduces flowering later in the Northeastern United States. Specifics Scientific Name: Prunus serrulata ‘Kwanzan’Pronunciation: PROO-nus sair-yoo-LAY-tuhCommon Name: Kwanzan CherryFamily: RosaceaeUSDA Hardiness Zones: 5B through 9AOrigin: Not native to North AmericaUses: Bonsai; container or above-ground planter; near a deck or patio; trainable as a standard; specimen; residential street tree Cultivars Some cultivars might be locally available including: ‘Amanogawa’(‘Erecta’): Semi-double, light pink, fragrant flowers, narrow columnar habit, about 20 feet tall‘Shirotae’(‘Mt. Fuji’, ‘Kojima’): Flowers double to semi-double, white, ruffled, about 2.5 inches across; ‘Shogetsu’—tree 15 feet tall, broad and flat-topped, flowers double, pale pink, the center may be white, can be two inches across‘Ukon’: Young foliage bronze, flowers pale yellow, semi-double Description Height: 15 to 25 feetSpread: 15 to 25 feetCrown Uniformity: Symmetrical canopy with a regular (or smooth) outline and individuals have more or less identical crown formsCrown Shape: Upright; vase shapeCrown Density: ModerateGrowth Rate: MediumTexture: Medium Trunk and Branches The bark is thin and easily damaged from mechanical impact; the tree grows mostly upright and will not droop; showy trunk; should be grown with a single leader. Pruning Requirement: Needs little pruning to develop a strong structureBreakage: ResistantCurrent Year Twig Color: BrownCurrent Year Twig Thickness: Medium Foliage Leaf Arrangement: AlternateLeaf Type: SimpleLeaf Margin: SerrateLeaf Shape: Lanceolate; ovateLeaf Venation: Banchidodrome; pinnateLeaf Type and Persistence: DeciduousLeaf Blade Length: 4 to 8 inches; 2 to 4 inchesLeaf Color: GreenFall Color: Copper; orange; yellowFall Characteristic: Showy Culture Light Requirement: Tree grows in full sunSoil Tolerances: Clay; loam; sand; acidic; occasionally wet; alkaline; well-drainedDrought Tolerance: ModerateAerosol Salt Tolerance: ModerateSoil Salt Tolerance: Poor In-Depth Neither stress-tolerant or highly drought-tolerant, Kwanzan cherry should be located on a site with loose soil and plenty of moisture. Not for an urban parking lot or exposed street tree planting where borers and other problems normally attack. It has some tolerance to salt and tolerates clay if well-drained. Kwanzan cherry has good yellow fall color, does not bear fruit, but is somewhat troubled with pests. These pests include aphids which distort new growth, deposits of honeydew, and sooty mold. Bark borers can attack flowering cherries, and scale insects of several types can infest cherries. Spider mites can cause yellowing or stippling of leaves and tent caterpillars make large webbed nests in trees then eat the foliage. Kwanzan cherry prefers full sun, is intolerant of poor drainage, and is easily transplanted. However, the useful life of the species is limited to about 15 to 25 years for 'Kwanzan' when on a good site. But it is an enjoyable tree and worth planting.