Cherry blossom trees already blooming in DC — but don’t be alarmed

If you’ve spotted any cherry blossoms blooming around D.C., the National Park Service wants you to know it is completely normal.

“The cherry trees that are out right now just happen to be a variety of tree that blooms in the fall or even winter if you get a few warm days. So this is not unusual,” said NPS spokesperson Mike Litterst. “We see this happen every fall, every winter. They will bloom again in the spring along with the other trees, when the time comes.”

There are a dozen different varieties of cherry trees found throughout the National Mall. The Yoshino trees are the most prevalent, making up about 70% of the 3,700 trees. Those are currently dormant.

“Those are the ones that you think of when you think of peak bloom, the real white petals circling the Tidal Basin,” he told WTOP. “Again, this is just a small percentage, that one kind of variety of tree that we have that comes out in the fall, in the winter. But we are expecting all the other trees to be out in their full glory — probably the end of March or early April.”

Litterst said these early pinkish white blossoms often get a lot of attention, so the NPS wanted to ease concerns with social media posts.

“Nobody should be freaking out or otherwise concerned that the trees are out,” he said. “We tend to go proactive on social media when it happens just to let people know that, you know, it’s perfectly normal. We’re tracking it and it’s OK.”

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