This Is When DC Will Reach Peak Cherry Blossom Season

published Mar 12, 2018
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(Image credit: eurobanks)

Now that Daylight Saving Time is upon us, we’re fast approaching a bunch of other indicators that spring has officially sprung. One of the loveliest is the blooming of the cherry blossoms in and around Washington, DC. Here’s when you can expect the trees to reach peak pink.

The National Park Service is predicting that peak bloom dates for 2018 will be March 17th through the 20th. This is earlier than usual, since peaks are usually around the first weekend in April, but NPS states that particularly warm or cold weather has caused the bloom to peak as early as March 15 (1990) and as late as April 18 (1958).

NPS first spotted green buds on February 24, the first stage in the bloom. On March 6, another indicator happened: the Okame variety was at peak bloom, as you can see in the National Mall’s tweet below:

Another milestone on the #BloomWatch – the only Okame variety of cherry tree has reached peak bloom! One of a handful of “indicator” trees that helps determine peak bloom, the Okame is located on the grounds of the National Mall office in East Potomac Park. #CherryBlossomDC

— National Mall NPS (@NationalMallNPS) March 6, 2018

The capital city has been hit by some snow in the past week, courtesy of the latest Nor’easter— the Washington Post’s weather team shared this stormy blossom photo on Wednesday:

It snowed last night – for many (not all) of us. We’ve got the details on just how much fell and where:

— Capital Weather Gang (@capitalweather) March 7, 2018

The cherry trees came to the US in 1912 as a gift from Japan—over 3,000 trees made the trip comprising 12 different species. The NPS has a whole history of the trees, which you can read up on right here.