Every year Washington DC celebrates the National Cherry Blossom Festival. The capital of welcomes spring with graceful beauty of thousands of blooming cherry trees. You can admire white and pale pink blossoms and breathe in delicate aroma walking along endless spring gardens around the Jefferson Memorial, East Potomac Park and the Washington Monument grounds. Thousands of city residents and tourists come here to witness the spectacle. Most trees are of the Yoshino variety, ’s favorite cultivated cherry tree that was developed in about 1870.
The Festival is an annual commemoration of the gift in 1912 of 3000 cherry trees (12 varieties) by Mayor Ozaki of Tokyo to Washington as a memorial of national friendship between the and . The first cherry trees were planted on the northern bank of the Tidal Basin by First Lady Helen Herron Taft and the Vicountess Chinda, wife of the Japanese Ambassador. These two original trees are still standing today several hundred yards west of the John Paul Jones statue.
Since the National Park Service has been keeping records of the blooming dates, the earliest blooming date has been March 15, 1990, and the latest date was marked on April 18, 1958.
For more photos see washingtondcguide.com/Cherry and for more information visit nationalcherryblossomfestival.org
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