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Getting to Know Peak Bloom
May 09, 2019 by Haya Aldoori

“When is peak bloom and how long does it last?”

These are questions that we get all too often during the cherry blossom season and we totally get it! People love the cherry blossoms and want to see the soft pink flowers when they are looking their best. Peak bloom is challenging to predict but learning more about it can help us make a more informed decision as to when it is best to come to High Park and view the cherry blossoms.

Cherry Blossoms 2010

Let’s start with the blooming journey, which looks something like this: The blooming period starts when 20% of the cherry blossom blooms are open. As the blooms continue to open, we get closer and closer to peak bloom. Peak bloom starts when 70% or more of the blossoms are open. Once open, the flowers can last from 3-10 days, depending on the weather conditions, until the end of the blooming period, which is when the petals fall of the tree.

Peak bloom is often thought to be the best time to view the cherry blossoms because that means that the majority of the flowers on the trees are open, but everyone has their preferences. Some people enjoy the blossoms when only 30-50% of the blooms are open and others enjoy them all the time regardless of the percentage of open blooms. Its really up to you! Keep in mind that if you wait too long, you could run the risk of missing the blooms.

2019 Cherry Blossoms at Stage 4 by Haya Aldoori

The weather is one of the most important factors in determining how long peak bloom will last. The cooler, calmer weather, can have us seeing a more extended bloom period. On the other hand, warm, unsettled (wind and rain) weather can make it so the bloom period is shorter.

The weather is a factor that is completely out of our control but, something we can do to make a small contribution to extending the blooming period is to be respectful of the cherry blossom trees. This might look something like leaving no trace and keeping our bodies off of the trees and their branches , because once the petals fall (doesn’t matter how they get to the ground), those flowers are done blooming for the year.

Cherry Blossoms 2017 by Andrew Yee

To guide you in choosing a day to come and visit the cherry blossoms when you feel they are best to view, keep an eye on our social media and the “Cherry Blossom Watch” page on our website for daily updates.

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