It's still too early to guess with any confidence 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.
The winter so far has been much warmer than normal. January and February have both tracked well above average. If that continues--and that's always a big "if"--it points to an earlier-than-average bloom, more late-March than early-April. But there's still plenty of time for cold weather to arrive and settle in, so it's still too early to predict with confidence.
Welcome to the 2019 Cherry Blossom Watch!
It’s still too early when the bloom will be this year, and no predictions have been issued yet. The National Park Service and Washington Post forecasts typically come around the beginning of March.
It’s still very early, and there’s plenty of time for things to change, but so far winter temperatures have been above normal. December averaged nearly 4 degrees above normal, and a warm start to this morning has helped January so far to be tracking about 6 degrees above normal. Looking ahead a week or two, the National Weather Service is predicting things to cool down quite a bit. For a bit more context, here are how temperatures tracked relative to peak bloom for the past several years:
|December||January||February||March||Peak Bloom Date|
ˤ = partial month, in progress
* = up until peak bloom
Over the past few days winter finally arrived with the first big snowstorm of the season (although we did have an inch or two of snow back in November, too). The photos on this page were taken yesterday after it had been snowing pretty steadily since the previous evening. By the time the snow finished about 8-10 hours later, the measurement station at DCA, the airport right across the Potomac about a mile from the Tidal Basin had measured 10.3 inches. Areas just slightly north had measured up to 12 inches.
There’s not going to be much to report for a while, but I’ll be checking in from the Tidal Basin from time to time in the coming weeks. And if there’s anything new to report, I’ll post an update. In the meantime, though, we’ll have to see how the rest of the winter plays out. And, as always, I keep the peak bloom forecasts page updated with the latest predictions. So stay tuned!
How It Looks
These were all taken yesterday (January 13).
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.