weeping cherry tree care

The house I recently moved in to has a weeping cherry tree that has never been taken care of. New growth is coming in over dead branches that I feel should have been cut away every year. My question is--can I prune this tree back to main branches? If so, what time of year can this be done? Also, it does not bloom--no flowers just leaves. Please help. Thank you
Submitted by BHGPhotoContest

The dead branches can be taken out anytime. Otherwise, prune your weeping cherry in winter. Remove no more than one-third of the living canopy annually; and even that much is pretty aggressive for a cherry. Add a 3-4-inch layer of organic mulch (shredded cedar or cypress, for example) around the base of the tree, clear out to the dripline. The mulch may ease competition stress (from turf) and promote blooms.


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