watering cherry tree

How much should I water my brand new-to-me cherry tree? And when?
I just planted a Lapins Sweet Cherry from Miller Nurseries, and a week from today, I have to go away for about 3 weeks.
I have a Nelson water timer that will turn the water on up to 3 times a day, for the times I choose in one minute increments, up to 11:59 hours. I can choose the days of the week I water. (Up to 3 weeks I think, but so far I've only been working on the first week. It only has Su, M, Tu, W, Th, F, Sa, 2nd, 3rd, so I'm thinking it does the 2nd and 3rd weeks like the first one, but I don't have the full instructions anymore.)
I have a week to watch it and get it right. I live in Baltimore and it will likely be in the 70's during the day during the time I'm gone.
As instructed, I filled the area around the newly planted tree with water twice, and it was still damp then next day.
I have a metal ball with a bunch of holes in it, that I placed 2 or 3 feet uphill from the tree, in order to water the whole area. It is uphill a little bit, a couple inches at 3 feet, but enough that the water is sure to head towards the tree, and have time to spread out.
The soil seems to have a little clay but not much. I had an apple tree growing there well for the last 20 years, until it got cedar apple rust and died.
The default start time in the timer is 11 AM.
If I figure out how long the water should be on to keep the ground moist ??, should I water at dawnshould i break that time into 2 or 3 segments during the day.
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If it were me, with those conditions, I'd water it 2 or 3 times a week to deliver about 5 gallons of water each time. With a deep watering, the soil will stay moist for 3 days at a time. Make sure the flow rate is set so that the water stays in the area under the tree.
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On Fri, 18 Apr 2008 06:23:54 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

Is there any particular time of day that is best for watering?
As to staying under the tree, I think this will be ok: I had made a levee around the base of the tree, as instructed, but I crushed down the 4 inches of the levee that faced uphill, and the water from the hose filled it. And because of the slope (which I guess is more than I said) half of the volume within the levee stayed full of water.) Sounds ok?
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If it were a lawn, then you'd want to do it during periods of low wind and sun to avoid evaporation, which would translate into starting it so it would finish by about 7am. For tree, there is no practical difference, but you'd avoid some small amount of evaporation by doing it similar to the above.

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Thanks again.
On Fri, 18 Apr 2008 14:25:54 -0700 (PDT), snipped-for-privacy@optonline.net wrote:

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I think you have to let it dry out a little between waterings. I would worry about root rot if you keep it constantly moist.
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wrote:

Even with a brand new tree, 3 to 4 feet, planted only 5 days ago, whose roots go only about 14 inches below the surface?

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