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What Is a Cherry Bush?

The Surinam cherry is native to South America.
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  • Written By: Marjorie McAtee
  • Edited By: W. Everett
  • Last Modified Date: 16 June 2014
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A cherry bush is a shrub that produces edible fruit, similar to a cherry. Cherry bushes are deciduous plants, meaning that they lose their leaves in winter. Cherry bushes usually grow white, aromatic flowers that are reminiscent of cherry blossoms in appearance, and dark green leaves. Cherry bushes may grow to a height of 25 feet (7.6 m). They typically produce an acidic fruit that is sweet in flavor.

The Surinam cherry or Pitanga cherry is considered one of the more popular types of cherry bush. This bush grows best in subtropical regions. Leaving young Surinams out in temperatures below freezing is not generally recommended. The Surinam typically enjoys direct, full sunlight and should usually be trimmed to about five feet (1.5 m) high for the best fruit. Surinam cherry bushes do not generally do well if they are planted in sandy soil.

The fruit of the Surinam cherry bush is typically dark red to black in color. The fruit of the Surinam is about one inch (2.5 cm) in diameter. A related variety, the Lolita, typically produces fruit that is sweeter in flavor and darker in color.

The sand cherry bush is considered another popular variety of the plant. Sand cherry bushes usually produce acidic, sweet fruit that may be deep blue to purple in hue. The fruits of the sand cherry bush are usually no more than one inch (2.5 cm) in diameter.

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Sand cherry bushes can be hardier than the subtropical Surinams, and are said to be capable of withstanding temperatures of minus 30 degrees Fahrenheit (-34 C). The sand cherry bush typically does best in sandy or well-drained soil. They usually like cold weather in the winter and warm weather in the summer, and generally prefer to be watered weekly.

The sand cherry bush can be vulnerable to a number of botanical health issues, including fungal infestations like brown rot. Fungicides can help to keep fungal diseases from harming sand cherry bushes. These bushes may not live as long as some trees and shrubs, however. They usually live for only about 20 years.

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