Cherry Blossoms Along The Potomac

April 11, 2003


Provided by: Rebecca Kidd
Summary authors & editors: Jim Foster; Rebecca Kidd

The photo above was taken on Sunday, April 6, and shows Washington D.C.'s famed cherry blossoms. Because of a colder than normal winter, the cherry blossoms peaked later than in recent years, but it's obvious that their beauty wasn't diminished by a slightly delayed arrival. While not a single tourist is in sight on this photo, literally tens of thousands of visitors took advantage of this fine spring day to observe the pink cherry blossoms. Note the daffodils near the base of the trees -- the Potomac River is just in view at left.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is an annual commemoration of the gift in 1912 of 3,000 cherry trees by Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington. Today, more than 3,700 cherry trees encircle the Tidal Basin, the grounds of the Washington Monument and several parks adjacent to the Potomac River. Although there are a variety of cherry trees in Washington, the most numerous is the Yoshino (Prunus yedoensis). According to the National Park Service, the peak bloom of the cherry blossoms occur when approximately 70% of the Yoshino blossoms are open. See also the Earth Science Picture of the Day for April 6, 2001.

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