|Species:||Prunus avium L.|
|Italian common noun:||Ciliegio selvatico|
Origin: Europe, Middle East, Caucasus
Botanical characteristics: It is a medium-sized deciduous tree, reaching 20 meters in height. The shape of the crown ranges from oval to round. It has a straight trunk with reddish-brown bark and horizontal stripes and lenticels on it. The leaves are serrated, elongated oval, 6-15 cm long and have a red and yellow stalk. In autumn the leaves turn orange and red. The showy bloom bears five-petalled white flowers in corymbs in March-April. The small fruits are edible, bitter or sweet cherries ranging from pale red to crimson to black.
Agronomic and environmental characteristics: It is frequent in the woods along the hills and Alpine valleys. It grows well on loamy but well-drained soils but can adapt to all types of soil, from acid to alkaline. It has an high resistance to drought.
Use: It is the species from which originated most of the cultivated cherry trees. It is a cultivar used as rootstocks for fruit and wood production. Moreover, it is used to reforest the uncultivated hilly and mountainous areas or can be used singly in gardens and parks as ornamental plant.
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