prunus / chokecherry (trees)

In the very large Plum Genus, these chokecherry trees are great additions to the landscape.  Whether its the rich purple foliage of the Canada Red, or the bright glistening bark of the Goldspur™.  These trees will add great interest to your space as well as attract wildlife for you to enjoy.

Canada Red chokeCherry

Prunus virginiana

The foliage is the star on this very hardy tree. It emerges green, then turns red as leaves mature, and finally turns red to reddish-purple in fall. Proper soil conditions are necessary for normal growth with this variety. Pay special attention to insure good drainage and aeration.  Extremely tolerant of drought this is one tough tree.


Height: 20 - 25 ft

Spread: 15 - 20 ft

Fall Color: Insignificant (No change)

USDA Zone: 2 - 7



Prunus maackii 'Jefspur'

This new, unique form of the classic Amur cherry is the perfect tree for small space gardens in cold climates. Winter hardy to Zone 2, mature plants of Goldspur™ create an upright oval tree that is half the size of the species. Creamy white spring flowers produce compact clusters of tiny black fruit in summer. The golden-colored exfoliating bark is especially ornamental in winter.

Height: 10 - 15 ft

Spread: 6 - 9 ft

Fall Color: Rich Yellow

USDA Zone: 2 - 7



The modest size as well as the beautiful showy flowers in spring leave little reason not to plant these stately  trees.  

Though a fruit may form on these trees its persistent nature keeps it on the branches until it is eaten by many birds.  A fantastic addition to your landscape, chokecherry have a fairly rapid growth rate and put on a great show in the landscape.

Whether it's the bright purple foliage of the Canada Red or the smart gold-glistening and exfoliating bark of the Goldspur™ these trees are a beautiful addition to your yard or outdoor space.




There is a fairly significant drawback to the Canada Red Chokecherry.  They are susceptible to a fungal disease known as Black Knot.  The fungus operates in a similar fashion to Fireblight however this is NOT a bacteria.  Since it is not, there is relatively little that can be done.  There exist no systemic fungicides that can help us to treat this disease.

The best treatment method for Black Knot is pruning.  Be sure and sterilize your pruning equipment with at least a 10% bleach solution upon making each cut and before making a new cut.  It is best to remove growth as far back as 12 inches from the fungal growth.  This disease will eventually kill the tree although it will take quite some time.  These are a resilient growing tree and will continue to try and grow even though they are infected.  Often they will sprout multiple branches from the same growth node/point creating what are known as witches' brooms.  If you catch it early, black knot can be maintained for quite some time.


The optimal time to prune these plants is in spring before the new growth emerges.

For more information, see our page on pruning.