Cherry blossoms’ peak bloom nears, but winds could wreak havoc

About 20 percent of the Yoshino cherry trees that line the Tidal Basin are now at full blossom, meaning the official bloom period has begun. Peak bloom -- when 70 percent of trees are at full bloom -- is projected for April 5-8. (Courtesy National Park Service)
About 20 percent of the Yoshino cherry trees that line the Tidal Basin are now at full blossom, meaning the official bloom period has begun. Peak bloom — when 70 percent of trees are at full bloom — is projected for April 5-8. (Courtesy National Park Service) (Courtesy National Park Service)
People were enjoying Easter Sunday along the Tidal Basin, where the cherry blossoms have begun turning pink and vibrant. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart)
People were enjoying Easter Sunday along the Tidal Basin, where the cherry blossoms have begun turning pink and vibrant. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) (WTOP/Kathy Stewart)
Because temperatures will not drop under 30 degrees, the cherry blossoms should be safe from any crucial damage, said Mike Litterst with the National Park Service. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart)
Because temperatures will not drop under 30 degrees, the cherry blossoms should be safe from any crucial damage, said Mike Litterst with the National Park Service. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart) (WTOP/Kathy Stewart)
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About 20 percent of the Yoshino cherry trees that line the Tidal Basin are now at full blossom, meaning the official bloom period has begun. Peak bloom -- when 70 percent of trees are at full bloom -- is projected for April 5-8. (Courtesy National Park Service)
People were enjoying Easter Sunday along the Tidal Basin, where the cherry blossoms have begun turning pink and vibrant. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart)
Because temperatures will not drop under 30 degrees, the cherry blossoms should be safe from any crucial damage, said Mike Litterst with the National Park Service. (WTOP/Kathy Stewart)

WASHINGTON — About a fifth of the Yoshino cherry trees spread along the Tidal Basin are now at full bloom, the National Park Service says — ahead of expected strong winds later this week that could wreak havoc on the newborn blossoms.

“Peak bloom” won’t be officially reached until about 70 percent of the iconic pink and white buds peek out. That’s projected for April 5-8, the park service said.

The Twitter account for the National Park Service’s National Mall said officials there are “keeping an eye on gusty winds” Wednesday. Such strong winds are the “enemy of the blossoms.”

The peak bloom date has shifted around over the past month. Initially projected for March 17–20, it has been pushed back twice because of colder-than-average spring temperatures.

On April, the park service announced that the blossoms had advanced to the “puffy white” stage.


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