The best way of estimating this comes from a long-time D. resident, Reverend Mackee, who lived in Georgetown during the Civil War years. Mackee’s records were incorporated in a book, Civil War Weather in Virginia, by Robert K. In my Civil War 150 weather post of March 8, 2011, I discussed Reverend Mackee’s weather observations and the fact that he was also quite attentive with regard to making notes of seasonal changes in flora and fauna and about the first springtime appearance of cherry tree blossoms in D. These cherry trees were obviously not of the variety donated to Washington by Japan in 1912 and it’s unclear when they would have blossomed in today’s climate.
An amateur meteorologist, the Reverend compiled what is believed to be the only complete weather record for the D. Nevertheless, it is a rough indicator and by comparison with current average blooming dates of cherry trees in the D. Tidal Basin, most of the above dates are quite late in the season: whereas the NPS says the latest peak bloom of the last 10 years was April 9, Rev.
The unique climate in Door County with cooler spring months and the unique soil composition make the peninsula ideal for growing cherries.
At one point Door County was believed to produce more cherries than anywhere else in the world.
Planning a trip that matches the time cherries peak is difficult: quite likely that you have reached just after the flowers peaked, or seeing the cherries in a blooming state just as you are leaving. Truth is, to make sure you can catch the full bloom, you will have to stay at least a week in the city to see how things go.
But that's not what typical foreign visitors do, their time is ticking.
As the city’s National Cherry Blossom Festival continues (and awaits the actual blooming, forecast around April 5), I thought I might trace how recent weather changes have affected the blooming dates of the Tidal Basin’s “Somei-Yoshino” cherry trees.
As would be expected with the earlier springs of recent years (with the exception of the current one), more frequent early blooming dates are occurring.
On January 6, 1910, however, when Japan’s shipment arrived, there was a major setback, as the trees were infested with insects and nematodes, forcing President Taft to burn the entire stock.Cherry blossoms date: Early April, usually a few days prior to the cherries in other spots in the city. Philosopher's Path: The pleasant path is located beside a canal that heads to the Silver Temple, providing lovely sakura blossoms and a chance to watch people in traditional kimono, perhaps even running into a few geisha girls. Opening date: Early beginning of April Maruyama Park: The pack is usually packed with local as well as foreign visitors during the hanami season.Meguro River: Located just near Shibuya, the attractive Meguro River is lined with more than 800 cherry trees and gets more beautiful when paper lanterns and the cherry trees are illuminated during the Nakameguro Sakura Festival at night. There is a huge weeping cherry tree catches all the attention at night when it’s lit up.The National Park Service (NPS) says the earliest ever recorded in its 92 years of record-keeping was March 15, 1990.Surprisingly, that March wasn’t exceptionally warm (50.2 degrees, or 3.4 degrees above normal at Reagan National Airport (DCA), although the previous two months were quite mild. C.’s cherry blossoms have shifted 5 days earlier: What about global warming and the future?Though it's impossible to give the exact date when the cherries will peak, here are our picked places for cherry blossom viewing (AKA "hanami") and the rough opening date to help you go with preparation.