Okame Japanese Cherry Blossom Trees
- Short, bushy tree.
- Early flowering.
- Red & Pink blossom.
- Max. Height: 5-10m
- RHS Award of Garden Merit
Prunus x incam Okamé: Bareroot Okamé Cherry Trees in Standard Sizes
Prunus Okame Cherry trees flower early, with red and pink blossom in March: after Accolade and before most other flowering cherries. The single, radiant pink blooms with purple-red centres cover the tree before its leaves appear. In autumn, the leaves turn into a warm range of colours, from peachy yellow to flushed red.
Okame is a short, bushy specimen tree that tends to branch low down. It can reach a height of about 5-10 metres. Very upright when young, it becomes quite round with maturity.
Delivery season: Cherry blossom trees are delivered bareroot during late autumn and winter, approximately November-March inclusive.
Choosing a size: Small trees are cheaper, easier to handle and more forgiving of less than ideal aftercare, so they are best for a big planting project. If instant impact is your priority, or if you are only buying a few plants for use in a place where it is convenient to water them well in their first year, then you may as well use bigger ones. All our bareroot trees are measured by their height in centimetres above the ground (the roots aren't measured).
- Height: To 5-10m
- Soil: Any decently well drained
- Use: Specimen, small garden, urban
- Colour: Red and pink blossom in March
- RHS Award of Garden Merit
- Bareroot delivery only: November-March
Growing Okame Cherry Trees
Suitable for any well drained soil, we recommend planting in full sun.
Did You Know?
Captain Collingwood Ingram, the great champion of ornamental cherry trees in Britain, bred this hybrid variety from Prunus campanulata and Prunus incisa. It has won both the Award of Garden Merit and an award for its cut flowers from the RHS.
We haven't verified this 100%, but it seems that Okame literally means tortoise, and refers to a chubby, smiling Japanese woman who would bring you luck in marriage. Her face is recreated in a party game called Fukuwarai, traditionally played together by adults and children on New Year's Eve.
Standard trees are measured by their girth in centimetres 1 metre above ground level: their trunk's waist measurement. Unlike sapling trees and hedge plants, standards aren't measured by their height, which will vary quite a bit both between and within species.
So, a 6/8cm standard tree has a trunk with a circumference of 6-8cm and an 8/10 standard has a trunk 8-10cm around. This measurement makes no difference to the tree's final height.
On average, standard trees are 2-3.5 metres tall when they arrive, but we cannot tell you precisely how tall your trees will be before we deliver them.
Notes on planting Prunus Okame Cherry trees:
Prunus Okame prefers fertile, moist soil with good drainage. They like heavy clay, as long as the site doesn't become waterlogged in winter. They are good to grow on chalky soil.
Although they are tolerant of shade, we really recommend them for full sun. Cherry trees in the shade tend to become spindly and won't flower very well.
We don't recommend them for exposed, windy sites, where they will be blown out of shape by the wind.
Although your trees are hardy, late spring frosts can ruin their flower display. Avoid planting cherry blossom trees in frost pockets or North facing sites in colder areas.
Prepare your site before planting:
It is good to dig over the site where you plant a tree several months in advance. Kill the weeds first: for tough weeds like nettles, brambles and ground elder, you will usually need a weed-killer to get rid of them. When you dig the soil over, remove stones and other rubbish and mix in well rotted compost or manure down to the depth of about 2 spades.
Watch our video on how to plant a tree for full instructions.
Remember to water establishing trees during dry weather for at least a year after planting.
Tree Planting accessories:
Prepare your site for planting by killing the weeds and grass with Neudorff WeedFree Plus.
You can buy a tree planting pack with a wooden stake & rubber tie to support the tree and a mulch mat with pegs to protect the soil around the base of your tree from weeds and drying out.
We suggest that you use mycorrhizal "friendly fungi" on the roots of all newly planted large trees: if your soil quality is poor, we strongly recommend it.
You can also improve your soil with bonemeal organic fertiliser and Growmore.