It's still too early to pin down when DC's cherry blossoms will bloom in 2020, and no peak bloom forecasts have been issued yet. Stay tuned for the first peak bloom forecasts to be announced around the beginning of March.
It has been a much warmer-than-normal winter so far. And there's not much in the available forecasts to suggest that that pattern is likely to change as we get into March. So all indications at this point suggest an early bloom. That said, we're dealing with the weather, and if we get a sustained cold spell in March, it can slow things down considerably.
We’re coming out of a cold spell and turning the corner into a milder stretch. The buds are coming along nicely, with most trees now with green buds and some heading into the “florets visible” stage.
But they’re still lagging quite a way behind where they were this time last year. Although that’s not a great measure, because this time last year it was looking like it might be a very early bloom until cold weather came in and brought things to a crawl. And two years ago there were already early bloomers out.
Some warmer days this week will start coaxing out more daffodils and other early spring flowers and start making it look and feel a little more like spring. The cherry trees still have some work to do, but hopefully temperatures will pick up a little through the rest of March to give the buds some help.
Despite some very cold spells in January into early February, and again to start March, so far the winter temperatures have been averaging a little above normal.
Here’s how the pattern looks on a day-by-day basis. The blue line represents daily averages since the beginning of December; the red line represents the historical averages.
And here’s how that translates into monthly averages:
- March: -5.3° (as of March 11)
- February: +3.2°
- January: +1.2°
- December: +3.8°
How It’s Looking at the Tidal Basin Today
It’s calm and milder.
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.