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Orange Pippin Trees USA logoSpecialist fruit trees for your orchard or back-yard

Surefire cherry trees

Prunus cerasus 'Surefire'

  • Picking season: Late
  • Self-fertility: Self-fertile
  • Fruit color: Red

Surefire is a large-fruited self-fertile tart cherry.  The skin is bright red, and the flesh and juice are also red, making it a "Morello" type tart cherry.

In comparison with Montmorency, Surefire produces larger cherries, but is slightly less productive.

Surefire tart cherry trees for sale

  • Full-size 1-year bare-root tree $35.75
    Mature height: 16ft-24ft after 10 years
    Mahaleb rootstock

How to grow

Surefire was so-named partly because it flowers very late, thereby avoiding the early spring frosts which are often a problem for growers in the eastern states. It has a relatively long flowering period for a sour cherry (5 days).

Surefire has become popular with U-pick orchards because the trees grow with an open habit which makes picking by hand easier.

Advice on fruit tree pollination.

Historical details

Surefire was the first tart cherry developed at Cornell University, where is was initially known as NY12716. It was released in the 1990s. It is essentially a cross between Morello-type and Montmorency-type sour cherries.

Surefire characteristics

  • Gardening skillBeginner
  • Self-fertilitySelf-fertile
  • Pollination group5
  • Pollinating othersGood
  • Bearing regularityRegular
  • Picking seasonLate
  • UsesCulinary
  • CroppingGood
  • Keeping (of fruit)1-3 days
  • Cold hardiness (USDA)(5) -20F / -29C
  • Summer maximum temperaturesCool ( 20-24C / 68-75F)Warm (25-30C / 76-85F)
  • Country of originUnited States
  • Period of origin1950 - 1999
  • Fruit colorRed
  • Fruit sizeLarge