Amur Chokecherry Prunus maackii 'Amber Beauty'

☠ Toxic to humans
🐾 Toxic to pets
🌸 Blooming
🍪 Edible
‍🌱 Easy-care
Manchurian cherry 'Amber Beauty'


The Amur Chokecherry 'Amber Beauty' is distinguished by its unique ornamental features, most notably its striking bark and foliage. The bark peels away in curls and flaunts a glossy amber color that becomes more vivid and rich as the tree matures. This exfoliating bark provides a striking visual interest, particularly during the winter months when the leaves have fallen and the branches are bare. Throughout the seasons, the leaves of 'Amber Beauty' transition through various shades of color. They emerge in spring with a fresh, green hue, and as they mature, they can develop yellow tones. In the fall, the foliage often takes on shades of yellow and gold, lending an additional layer of seasonal beauty to the plant. The Amur Chokecherry is also known for its aromatic white flowers that typically bloom in spring. These blossoms are small yet plentiful, grouped in showy clusters that attract pollinators like bees and butterflies. Following the flowering season, the plant produces small black fruits that can attract birds and wildlife. The contrast between the fruit and the bark can be quite dramatic and adds to the ornamental value of the plant. Overall, 'Amber Beauty' offers a combination of features that make it attractive year-round: colorful, peeling bark, changing leaf colors, fragrant spring flowers, and eye-catching fruits. These characteristics make it a versatile choice for landscaping and garden design.

Plant Info
Common Problems

About this plant

  • memoNames

    • Family


    • Synonyms

      Amur Chokecherry, Maack's Cherry, Amber Beauty.

    • Common names

      Prunus maackii 'Amber Beauty'.

  • skullToxicity

    • To humans

      Amur chokecherry may contain compounds that are toxic when ingested, including cyanogenic glycosides, which can release cyanide into the body. If parts of the plant are eaten in large quantities, symptoms of poisoning can include headache, dizziness, confusion, vomiting, difficulty breathing, and convulsions. In severe cases, ingestion may lead to cyanide poisoning, which can be fatal.

    • To pets

      Amur chokecherry is also toxic to pets because it contains cyanogenic glycosides. If a pet ingests parts of the plant, it can experience symptoms similar to those in humans, such as vomiting, difficulty breathing, and potentially seizures. Consumption in large amounts might lead to cyanide poisoning, which can be life-threatening for pets. Owners should seek immediate veterinary care if they suspect their pet has ingested any part of the plant.

  • infoCharacteristics

    • Life cycle


    • Foliage type


    • Color of leaves


    • Flower color


    • Height

      20 feet (6 meters)

    • Spread

      20 feet (6 meters)

    • Plant type


    • Hardiness zones


    • Native area

      Northeast Asia


  • money-bagGeneral Benefits

    • Ornamental Appeal: Prunus maackii 'Amber Beauty', commonly known as Manchurian Cherry or Amur Chokecherry, has attractive peeling bark in shades of yellow and amber, making it a visually appealing addition to landscapes.
    • Seasonal Interest: The tree provides year-round interest with its changing bark, white spring flowers, summer fruit, and yellow to reddish fall foliage.
    • Wildlife Attraction: Flowers provide nectar and pollen for pollinators, while the small black fruits attract birds and other wildlife.
    • Drought Tolerance: Once established, it shows a degree of tolerance to drought, reducing the need for regular watering.
    • Cold Hardy: This tree is capable of withstanding cold temperatures, making it suitable for planting in colder regions.
    • Urban Tolerant: The Manchurian Cherry can tolerate urban conditions such as pollution and compacted soil, making it suitable for city landscaping.
    • Low Maintenance: Requires minimal pruning and care once established, making it a low-effort choice for gardeners.
    • Shade Provider: As it matures, the tree can provide a moderate amount of shade, making it useful for planting in sunny areas.

  • medicalMedical Properties

    This plant is not used for medical purposes.

  • windAir-purifying Qualities

    This plant is not specifically known for air purifying qualities.

  • leavesOther Uses

    • Amur chokecherry bark can be used as a natural dye for textiles, giving a range of colors from warm yellow to deep brown depending on the mordant used.
    • The wood of Amur chokecherry is hard and can be utilized for creating small wooden objects like handles, carvings, or inlay work.
    • Frozen branches with berries can be used as a natural decoration during the winter season, adding a touch of color to gardens or used in floral arrangements.
    • The dense canopy of Amur chokecherry can provide habitat for birds, offering them shelter and a place to build nests away from predators.
    • Young shoots and leaves might be used as forage for certain types of livestock, such as goats, though consumption should be monitored due to potential toxicity.
    • Amur chokecherry trees can be planted as a sound buffer in urban landscapes to help reduce traffic noise.
    • The glossy foliage and attractive bark can be used as a backdrop in photography, especially for portraits and macro shots in garden settings.
    • Amur chokecherry can be used in bonsai cultivation, with its interesting bark and structure making it a unique and challenging subject.
    • The autumn leaves of Amur chokecherry can be collected and used in art projects, such as leaf pressing or for creating natural motifs in crafting.
    • Fallen Amur chokecherry petals can be gently gathered and used as a natural confetti for outdoor celebrations, decomposing without harming the environment.

Interesting Facts

  • bedFeng Shui

    The Amur Chokecherry is not used in Feng Shui practice.

  • aquariusZodiac Sign Compitability

    The Amur Chokecherry is not used in astrology practice.

  • spiralPlant Symbolism

    • Renewal: As a species of cherry tree, the Prunus maackii 'Amber Beauty' often symbolizes new beginnings and the renewal of life, connected to its spring blossoms heralding the end of winter.
    • Beauty: The elegant blossoms of the Prunus maackii, commonly known as Manchurian cherry, represent beauty and the transient nature of life, reminding us to appreciate the fleeting moments of beauty.
    • Education: The Manchurian cherry, in some cultures, may be associated with education and intellectual pursuits, partly due to the respect for cherry trees in countries like Japan where scholarly appreciation is celebrated.
    • Impermanence: The plant's brief but brilliant flowering period is often seen as a symbol of the impermanent nature of life, echoing the Buddhist concept of impermanence.

Every 7-10 days
2500 - 10000 Lux
Not applicable
Late Winter
As needed
  • water dropWater

    The Manchurian cherry, commonly known as the Amur chokecherry, should be watered deeply, ensuring that the water reaches the roots without waterlogging the soil. In the first growing season, it's important to maintain a consistent watering schedule, watering about once a week with approximately 15-20 gallons for young trees, depending on weather conditions. After establishment, they require less frequent watering, but should be monitored during prolonged dry spells and watered accordingly, possibly every two to three weeks.

  • sunLight

    The Amur chokecherry thrives best in full sun to partial shade. The ideal spot would be an area that receives at least 6 hours of direct sunlight a day, but it can also tolerate some shade, especially in the hotter parts of the day.

  • thermometerTemperature

    The Amur chokecherry is hardy and can tolerate a wide range of temperatures, surviving minimum temperatures down to -40°F and maximum temperatures well above 100°F. The ideal temperature range for this plant is between 60°F and 75°F.

  • scissorsPruning

    Prune the Amur chokecherry to maintain its shape and remove any dead or crossing branches. The best time for pruning is in late winter or early spring before new growth starts. Light pruning can be done annually, while more extensive shaping should be done every two to three years.

  • broomCleaning

    As needed

  • bambooSoil

    For the Amur Chokecherry (Prunus maackii 'Amber Beauty'), a well-draining soil mix is vital, consisting of loamy soil, organic compost, and coarse sand to improve drainage. The ideal soil pH should range between 6.0 and 7.5.

  • plantRepotting

    Amur Chokecherry trees are typically not repotted as they are outdoor trees; instead, they can be transplanted if necessary. Young trees may be planted or transplanted every few years until they reach maturity.

  • water dropsHumidity & Misting

    Amur Chokecherry trees are adaptable to various humidity levels but prefer average outdoor humidity. They don't require any specific humidity adjustments when planted in their natural outdoor environment.

  • pinSuitable locations

    • Indoor

      Growing Amur Chokecherry indoors is not practical due to its size.

    • Outdoor

      Plant in full sun, well-draining soil, space well, water regularly.

    • Hardiness zone

      3-7 USDA

  • circleLife cycle

    The Manchurian cherry, Prunus maackii 'Amber Beauty', begins its life as a seed which, upon germination in favorable conditions, sprouts and develops into a seedling. As the seedling grows, it develops a root system and shoots, eventually forming a sapling characterized by the plant's distinct bronze-bark. Through vegetative growth, it matures into an adult tree that blooms in spring with white flowers, attracting pollinators. Following pollination, the flowers develop into small fruit (cherries), which, when ripe, are typically dispersed by wildlife, facilitating the spread of seeds. This deciduous tree goes through an annual cycle of foliage growth and senescence, with leaves turning yellow in the fall before being shed. The Manchurian cherry can live for many years, going through this growth and reproduction cycle annually until eventual senescence leads to the end of the plant's life cycle.

  • sproutPropogation

    • Propogation time

      Late Winter

    • The most popular method for propagating the Prunus maackii 'Amber Beauty', commonly known as the Amur chokecherry, is through softwood cuttings. This process is best done in late spring or early summer when new growth is still flexible but has begun to mature. Take cuttings that are about 4 to 6 inches (10 to 15 centimeters) long, cutting just below a node. Remove the leaves from the lower half of the cutting and dip the cut end into a rooting hormone to encourage root development. Then insert the cutting into a pot filled with a moist, well-draining potting mix. Cover the pot with a plastic bag or place it in a propagator to maintain high humidity around the cutting, ensuring that the plastic does not touch the leaves. Place the pot in a warm area with indirect light and wait for the cutting to root, which may take several weeks.