Cherry Blossom Watch Update: January 14, 2019

Winter finally arrived, with a snowstorm that dumped around 10 inches of snow. But so far, temperatures have averaged warmer than normal.

DC's cherry blossoms reached peak bloom on April 1, 2019. They're now done for the year.

You can find some ideas for other things to see and do in DC here.

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:

DecemberJanuaryFebruaryMarchPeak Bloom Date
2018-19+3.8+1.2+3.2+0.0April 1
2017-18-0.5-0.3+6.3-3.2April 5
2016-17+2.1+6.1+8.7-0.7*March 25
2015-16+11.5-1.1+0.9+6.5*March 25
2014-15+4.0-0.4-8.7-1.5April 10
2013-14+2.6-3.8-1.2-3.9April 10
2012-13+5.9+4.3-0.7-3.0April 9
2011-12+4.9+4.7+5.3+10March 20
2010-11--1.3+3.6-0.9March 29
Data sources: National Weather Service / National Park Service.
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).

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

Tidal Basin | January 13, 2019

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 January 14, 2019 5:08 pm

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