SWEET CHERRIES - So Delicious
Sweet cherries unlike their sour cousins should be eaten fresh. They are a perfect guilt-free snack because they are low on calories, fat-free, rich in vitamin, A, vitamin C and beta-carotene. They have some great health benefits and you can't go wrong when eating cherries.
Sweet cherries can only be grown in areas that experience mild winter seasons and hot summers. Most sweet cherries will be damaged by the cold or have fruit cracking as a result of exposure. If you are interested in planting sweet cherries in your homes landscape or commercially, you should do it right so as to have the best results. Make sure that the tree is planted in the right soil, mixture conditions and proper light.
Cherries should be planted in spring and the plants should be about 20 feet from each other to allow them to enjoy maximum sunlight. You should at least have three plants to make sure that there is a healthy cross pollination. Remember that if there is no cross pollination you will not have any fruits on your tree.
Make sure that the soil you are planting the sweet cherries in is not waterlogged because the tree will not tolerate that. You should add peat, and garden soil (organic) to the depth that is twice the root ball and the width that is the same as the widest branch. This is just to ensure that the soil is well drained. During summer you should water the tree at least once every week. Make sure you water the entire area that contains the mixed soil. Do some mulching, that will help in holding water when the sun is too hot.
You should get the right fertilizer to fertilize the tree annually. For great sweet cherries make sure you follow the instructions on the fertilizer’s package. Always remember to prune the cherry trees after the blooming that comes in spring. Cut all the shoots that are growing vertically and make sure you remove any suckers that are growing from the trunk’s base. Always protect your tree from birds. For small trees cover with netting and for large tree use aluminum pie pans hanging from the branches.
Sweet cherries should be harvested when they reach the right size. You should also make sure that they have the right taste and color. The taste and the color will depend on when the fruits are harvested from the trees. Different people will have their own preferences and thus when they are the right size you can harvest them depending on your taste and color preference.
When harvesting, you should try as much as possible to avoid damaging the fruits. Twist the stems carefully because cherries do not keep well even with the best of treatment. Any bruise on the fruits will cause them to go bad very fast.
Sweet cherries should be used immediately after being harvested. If this is not the case try to store them loosely in a single layer in an airtight container, then keep them in a refrigerator. Though in a refrigerator, they will still not stay for a long period. However, if you love sweet cherries as much as me that is no problem.
Sweet cherries can be used for any recipe that tart cherries are used for, but they are best just for eating right of the tree or out of the bag fresh from the super market. Don't forget the health benefits of cherries are an added plus.
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