NPS Moves Peak Bloom Prediction Forward to April 1

The original peak bloom prediction was April 3-6, but warmer temperatures in the past week, along with warm temperatures anticipated over the coming weekend, have pushed the development ahead.

DC Cherry Blossoms in 2021

It seems increasingly likely that DC will still be under COVID-19 restrictions in spring 2021 while the cherry blossoms are blooming. So it's shaping up to be a good year to follow along from afar from the safety and comfort of your home.

The National Park Service this morning revised their peak bloom prediction to April 1.

The original peak bloom prediction was April 3-6, but warmer temperatures in the past week, along with warm temperatures anticipated over the coming weekend, have pushed the development ahead.

Will There Still be Cherry Blossoms on … ?

I’ve been getting a lot of questions about how long the cherry blossoms last after peak bloom.

The short answer is that it very much depends on the weather. In ideal conditions (cool, calm, dry), they can last a week or even two weeks. But as they move past full bloom the flowers also become more fragile, which makes them more vulnerable to rain, wind, and storms, and it’s not unheard of for them to be mostly gone in 4-6 days.

For some visual sense of what that means, I’ve put together this photo timeline from past years showing the types of things you can expect in the days before and after peak bloom.

Last updated March 26, 2019

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  • We will be driving to Washington early Saturday 6th April. Will we see the cherry blossoms?

    • The flowers are holding up well. The current weather forecast calls for rain on Friday afternoon. That's not helpful, but it's impossible to say how much effect it will have (or even if it will actually end up raining). Chances are the blossoms will still be looking lovely, but when you throw rain into the mix at this point there's always a risk of it knocking petals off.

  • Hi, Our trip to DC is booked for April 3-6. Will we have a chance to see full bloom still in good shape? Fingers crossed. We will arrive late at night on 4/3 so pretty much April 4 is an official day to see them. This is our first time seeing Cherry blossom. So much looking forward to it! We were so happy when the peak bloom prediction was from April 3-6 but now just hoping I can still able to see them in good shape ?

    • They should be looking lovely. Two to three days after peak bloom is my personal favorite time for them.

  • Our visit to DC is booked for 4/4-4/5 (based on earlier predictions and to beat the weekend crowds). We have seen blossoms in peak bloom in 2016, while 2018 was bit of disappointment. This time my parents are coming all the way from India, and it would be first time experience viewing the cherry blossoms for them. Hope the weather stays calm, and we get a nice view.

  • My "Blossom Buds" and I, as tradition, are coming to see the beautiful blossoms. Predictions prompted our visit for 4/6-4/7 but blooms are out, just one, at 3/25. I have a science degree in OT, love analyzing, but I'm stumped if I should try to change the reservation to this weekend. Blooms last 4-6 days. If full bloom is 4/1, rain and wind could blow these beauties out in their prime like Thursday.I will have missed it again, like last year. Anyone who has the time, effort and opinion, please share your thoughts. I thank you!

    • I'm in the same boat as you! We planned our trip for 4/6 - 4/14 just to see the Cherry Blossoms for the first time. The weather says 40% chance of rain on Friday and Saturday, so I'm crossing my fingers that they will hang in there just for us :).

      David- based on your experience with D.C. weather, is a 40% chance of rain cause for concern or is it really the winds that will make the difference on the blossoms?

      • As they start to fade, they can definitely become vulnerable to rain. The further from the peak bloom date, the more fragile they get. And the typical weather pattern here is that the rain is quickly followed by windy, clear weather, so it's often a 1-2 punch. That said, unsettled weather is pretty normal at this time year, which makes the weather forecasting a bit more hit and miss, and it might well pan out differently.

    • In the right conditions (cool, calm, dry) they can easily last a week and perhaps up to two. So odds are good that they'll still be looking beautiful on 4/6.

  • We will be in Washinton dc from 27 until 31. But this Sat 31th, the weather seems to be raining. So maybe for us, the best time to see cherry is on 30th? So pity because at that day, not much cherry blossom?

    • There will be more coming out each day into early next week. There should be plenty to see over the weekend.

    • They should be looking lovely all weekend. There will be more flowers out on the 31st than the 30th.

    • It's impossible to say for sure. If the weather cooperates (cool, calm, dry) they can hang around for 7-8 days after peak bloom comfortably. But if rain, wind, or storms come through, they can pick off the fragile flowers.