North Star Cherry

north star cherry prunus cerasus ftimg

North Star Cherry

Prunus cerasus ‘North Star’

Description & Overview

North Star cherry is a dwarf tart cherry introduced by the University of MN in 1950. This selection grows 8′-10′ tall on average. It is a ‘Morello type’ so has very dark red flesh and a nice strong cherry flavor. Excellent for the home grower as very cold hardy, and the shorter size makes it so much easier to pick, prune or cover with netting for bird protection.

Core Characteristics

Mature Height: 12′
Mature Spread: 10′
Growth Rate: Moderate
Growth Form: Tree
Light Requirements: Full Sun
Site Requirements: Well drained site
Flower: White
Bloom Period: Mid-May
Foliage: Green
Fall Color: N/A
Fruit Notes: The dark morello type fruits make an exceptionally good cherry jam and works well for all cherry based products.

Suggested Uses:


north star cherry prunus cerasus

Wildlife Value:

Relished by birds and raccoons.

Maintenance Tips:

North Star is a genetic dwarf so the shorter height makes it much easier to prune and pick the fruit for the home grower. Normally pruned to a central leader.

north star cherry prunus cerasus


Birds (especially robins) can sometimes be an issue when fruit is nearly ripe. Covering the tree with netting or using scare tactics (hang shiny metal deflector strips in tree) may be necessary to obtain a good crop.

Leaf Lore:

The North Star cherry tree grown by this author provided a huge crop of 28 quarts of cherries (measured after pitting) one season. Enough cherries for every conceivable purpose with plenty to give away to lucky friends and family members. Any surplus cherry jam made from this tree was always fought after as well. Lucky friends indeed as cherry jam is this writer’s favorite.

Companion Plants:

North Star is self-pollinating.

north star cherry prunus cerasus benchcard