Cherry Blossom Watch Update: April 2, 2016

The cherry blossoms are mostly done now. There are a few late stragglers still hanging on despite the rain, but strong winds tonight and tomorrow morning will likely be a knockout punch.

They’re mostly done now. There are still a late stragglers scattered about, but you have to go looking for them now. Most of the trees have lost most or all of their flowers and are in an in-between stage where they’re no longer flowering but haven’t yet leafed out.

The storms didn’t materialize yesterday, the showers didn’t amount to much, and the wind was mostly a stiff breeze, but it was still enough to knock many of the remaining petals off with the flowers in such a fragile state.

It’s raining this morning, but it’s not pouring. And it has so far been still.

But that’s likely to change. Yesterday afternoon, the National Weather Service issued a High Wind Watch for the area for tonight through Sunday morning. The threshold for that is gusts reaching 60mph and/or sustained wind of at least 40mph. That’s going to blow nearly all of the remaining petals off. There won’t be much left to see tomorrow.

For today, if you head down to the Tidal Basin, your best bet for finding trees with flowers still on them is around the MLK Memorial, especially just back from the water’s edge. There are several trees, many of them smaller ones, that are still flowering. But they might not last through tonight’s wind.

There are also some other flowering trees nearly the FDR Memorial on West Basin Drive–they’re not cherry blossoms, but they’re looking very pretty and are a good option if you’re looking for photos next to flowers, especially because they’re low to the ground.

The Kwanzans aren’t flowering yet; here are some photos of them from yesterday.

And the Floral Library is looking wonderful (there are photos in yesterday’s update).

Now that the Yoshinos are pretty much done for 2016, I’ll be posting updates much less regularly. I’ll be keeping an eye on the Kwanzans from time to time (and posting some updates), but it won’t be daily. So if those are of interest, please be sure to check back over the next week or so. And I’ll post a wrap-up in the next few days with some of my favorite photos from this year.

Submit Your Favorite Photo from 2016

I also plan to do a post featuring reader photos from 2016. If you’d like to submit a photo for consideration for that, please use the upload box here:

Thanks to all those who submitted photos! Uploads are now closed. You can find the first batch of submissions here.

Please only upload 1 photo in JPG format. Only submit photos that you took, not someone else’s. Ideally, it should be at least 1300 pixels wide. Both portrait and landscape orientations are fine. There’s only space for 1 photo from each person, so please just choose your favorite. I can’t guarantee I’ll be able to include all of them–there might be too many submissions for it to be practical. And you retain all copyright, of course, but in uploading a photo you are giving me permission to post it on this site. You’re welcome to watermark it if you like–that’s your choice. I’ll be disabling the uploads on April 5, so please submit them by then.

Cherry Blossom 10-Miler Road Closures

If you’re heading anywhere near the Tidal Basin tomorrow morning (Sunday) you’ll have to contend with road closures for the Cherry Blossom 10-Miler.

The Tidal Basin remains open to pedestrian traffic and you can still access it even during the race. But you might have to cross roads dodging swarms of oncoming runners, so please exercise caution.

You won’t be able to park along Ohio Drive or around East Potomac Park during the morning.

You can find the road closure maps here. Most of the road closures are in effect from 5am to 10:30am.

If you’re running the race tomorrow, please note the race modifications that have just been posted due to the high winds. You can find them here.

Ohio Drive Special Traffic Restrictions

The special traffic restrictions that make Ohio Drive one-way are still in effect but are scheduled to end after tomorrow (April 3).

Photos from this Morning

Other Flower Trees Nearby

There are other varieties of cherry trees that are still flowering, although there are much fewer of those trees.

There are also other flowering trees. These particular ones, which aren’t cherries (at least, that’s my understanding), are near the FDR Memorial, along both sides of West Basin Drive.

Want to Help Support DC's Cherry Trees?

If you'd like to help support the care and upkeep of the cherry trees around the Tidal Basin, the Trust for The National Mall has launched an Endow a Cherry Tree Campaign. Donations go to the official Cherry Tree Endowment, which will give the National Park Service additional resources to fund the care, maintenance, and possible replacement of the cherry trees. You can find more information here.

The Trust is dedicated to marshaling private support for maintaining and improving the history National Mall area. I'm not affiliated with the Trust--just an admirer of their efforts.

Last updated April 7, 2016 2:34 pm

View Comments

  • Hi David! Thank you very much for the great high professional job you did with love to photographing and nature. We are coming to Washington from Calgary next week only and unfortunately missed most of the cherry blossoms already but really glad to find your web-site and your beautiful pictures that you posted every day. Every morning we were waiting for the update. Really impressed with your job!!! Thank you very much again!

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