Colin Mills, compiler of the Hortus Camdenensis, died in late November 2012 after a short illness. As he always considered the Hortus his legacy, it is his family's intention to keep the site running in perpetuity. It will not, however, be updated in the near future.

Prunus avium ‘Black Heart’

A cultivar of Prunus avium L. ‘Fruit pretty large, growing, for the most part, singly, heart-shaped, a little flattened at the apex, compressed on one side, with a slight suture. Stalk one inch and a half long, slender. Skin of a dark purple approaching to black when fully ripe. Flesh pale red, rather firm, but mellow, with a rich well flavoured Juice. Ripe the end of July or beginning of August.’ [George Lindley – Orchard Guide p.149/1831].

Horticultural & Botanical History

A fairly vigorous tree, spreading and drooping. A mid-season cherry of fair quality which rarely cracks. [Grubb, Don].

Figured in Pomona Brittanica PB pl.VII/1812. An old variety, I have no information on its origins.

History at Camden Park

Listed in the 1850 and 1857 catalogues only [Cherry no.7/1850].


There are a number of Black Heart cherries, usually with a specific prefix, e.g. ‘Fraser’s Black Heart’.

Published Apr 22, 2010 - 05:17 PM | Last updated Jul 23, 2011 - 04:46 PM

2 cherries are shown, both heart-shaped, one amber coloured the other red to almost black. Pomona Brittanica pl.7, 1812.

Prunus avium ‘Black Heart’ | PB pl.VII/1812. The varieties 'White Heart' and 'Black Heart' are shown.


Family Rosaceae
Region of origin

Garden origin, unknown

  • Old black Heart
  • Ansell’s Fine Black
  • Early Blaxk
  • Lacure
  • Spanish Black Heart


Common Name

Dessert Cherry

Name in the Camden Park Record

Black Heart 

Confidence level high