Washington cherry blossoms peak late but still deliver

66 photos

Beautiful weather over the weekend coaxed the delicate buds to bloom on many of DC’s cherry trees to the delight of tourists and locals alike. This year’s late peak, due to the cold start to spring, pushed back the National Park Service’s initial March 26-30 prediction throwing shade on more than a few blossom enthusiasts’ original travel plans.

Take a look of photos of the cherry blossoms as they bloom into their peak, as well as pictures from past years of the festival.

Cherry Blossom Festival in the pink for 2013

The 101st event centers on birth, renewal and a blend of two cultures

By Laura Lefavor, For The Baltimore Sun
1:28 p.m. EDT, April 5, 2013

When it comes to spring color, Washington knows how to put on a show.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival blossoms each year to commemorate the gift of some 3,000 cherry trees from Tokyo to the nation’s capital in 1912.

While the festival had modest beginnings, the event has since evolved into a springtime celebration that attracts millions of visitors from around the world.

“It’s truly amazing how a gift from over 100 years ago has now reached so many people,” says Diana Mayhew, the festival’s president.

This year, that gift will keep on giving, as an expected 1.5 million people descend upon the nation’s capitol to see the blooming cherry trees in Washington’s Tidal Basin. According to Mayhew, the trees are doing very well after the relatively mild winter. Peak bloom, or when 70 percent of the trees are in flower, will not come as early this year because of recent cold temperatures. UPDATE: Officials forecast the majority of the blooms will be making their grand appearances April 6-8.