D.C. in Photos: Cherry Blossom Festival

The people of Washington, D.C., dig their cherry trees and the three weeks in which they flower. They hold a festival to celebrate.

It was running full tilt on Easter Sunday when my dear wife Karen and I walked the ring of the Tidal Basin, hoping to see some magnificent cherry blossoms in bloom to go with the Cherry Blossom Festival.

The Cherry Blossom girls.

The Cherry Blossom girls.

The parents of these two beautiful sisters had dressed them for the occasion and sat them in a tree for a photo opp. Everybody was smiles and giggles when I stepped behind to take my photo.

That's entertainment.

That’s entertainment.

A portable stage was surrounded by festival goers listening to a duo perform their music. Sweet. Fruitful.

Merch central.

Merch central.

A tent was filled with T-shirts and tea cups and other cherry blossom-related fare available for purchase. How colorful.

The trees, proper, though, oh, what a winter it was. Let’s just say the Capital’s cherry trees ringing the Tidal Basin suffered the same cold and snow stress as the rest of us on the U.S. east coast.

Hello, bud.

Hello, bud.

There was some buds popping out on some trees near the water.

More pink.

More pink.

The more we walked, the more pink we saw. I figured the higher the sun got in they sky and the warmer the temperatures became, nearing 70ยบ F, the greater our chances at full petal-potential became.

I think I was right. Also, though, I’m not sure I’m quite the cherry blossom expert I first believed. Karen and I discussed the issue.

Fine white.

Fine white.

She was pretty sure it was just the fine and delicate, pink or white flower, that designated the cherry blossom.

Pink tree, too.

Pink tree, too.

I argued for the thicker, darker pink blossom to be included. There were more of these flowers out around the basin.

Flower power.

Flower power.

One thing we agreed upon. The farther we strayed inland toward our hotel on H and 7th, the more those cherry trees were in bloom.

Blooming at the Federal Reserve.

Blooming at the Federal Reserve.

Coming tomorrow: The White House

See Saturday: Food and Drink

Feel free to weigh in with your cherry blossom knowledge. Which of these are cherry trees? Would you schedule a trip to D.C. for the Cherry Blossom Festival, and why or why not? Which photo is your favorite, and why?

83 thoughts on “D.C. in Photos: Cherry Blossom Festival

  1. Any friend of Yvette… ๐Ÿ™‚ But seriously, if it’s about wish lists Japan would be my option for the Sakura, but I wouldn’t sneeze at a trip to Washington DC.

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    • The D.C. trip was an easier option for MDW Karen and I at this point, Jo. Perhaps Sakura someday! I hope you get to witness the glory of D.C. at that time of year. And, yes, Y and I are tight friend. ๐Ÿ™‚

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Walkin’ in DC – Part 2 – PEOPLE | priorhouse blog

  3. I really love the shot of the girls in the tree – and those are $110.00 vera bradley bags they each have are extra cute – with their hair and jackets – โค great capture.

    also, did you know they have a DC webcam:

    http://www.nps.gov/cherry/cherry-blossom-web-cam.htm

    and here is a bit of info:

    "A GIFT OF BEAUTY AND FRIENDSHIP:
    The beautiful and delicate cherry blossoms cultivated in the National Mall and Memorial Parks have inspired generations of viewers since 1912. A gift from Japan, the flowering trees symbolize friendship between nations, the renewal of spring, and the ephemeral nature of life. Blooming occurs between mid-March and mid-April depending on the species of tree and annual environmental conditions."

    my post form last year is here:
    http://priorhouse.org/2014/01/21/photo-challenge-lookin-up-blossoms-in-dc/

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  4. Beautiful photos, Mark. I love the pink blooms most. I’d love to go back and visit D.C. when the cherry blossoms are in bloom.

    About 1981 when I worked at WAQX (95X), I took our two daughters with me while I covered a peace protest in D.C. It was a short weekend. Wonderful trip – even though we nearly missed our flight because I forgot about daylight savings time. A little vehicle whisked us to our plane with minutes to spare. That wouldn’t happen now-a-days. ๐Ÿ˜‰

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    • Nice assignment for 95X, Judy.

      And no, these days you would have missed the plane. No special treatment. At the TSA gate screening coming home, they pulled me aside with my carry-on back after it went through the X-ray. Oh, my! Turns out I had forgotten I’d put our extra bottles of water and iced tea in from the hotel fridge in there so Karen and I could drink them on the Metro on the way. Oops. They just asked me if I wanted to go back out and drink them or leave them there. We left them there.

      Liked by 1 person

  5. I love the bottom photo best because the blossoms are pink and the tree is huge. Your photos definitely have me wanting to plan a trip for next year’s cherry blossom time! Thanks for sharing! ๐Ÿ˜€

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    • Thanks, Rachel. Think how beautiful it is when all the trees around the Tidal Basin are out even more than the one in the bottom photo! Someday Karen and I will go back at this time because of that thought. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  6. I love cherry blossoms, Mr. Mark! On my bucket list, as you may know, is getting to Japan in the spring for hanami which literally translates to “flower viewing.” The whole country celebrates. ๐Ÿ™‚

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  7. I like that you are so unique in showing us all angles and special things, like the precious pink dresses on the girls perched in a tree and the pink cherry blossom merchandise. Mark, I like the pink blossoms with the yellow forsythia the best, then the ‘weeping’ cherry tree is my second favorite! Your wife, Karen, in the photo adds a lot of grace and beauty, too. I always like your personal touches and comments, too.

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  8. somehow WordPress has kicked me off all of my “follow” lists so I don’t get notifications on your posts. Arrrgh. Glad you’re keeping up the good work. Sorry the blossoms were a bit of a bust. Still a fun time though–music and crowds are good!

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  9. If only. We have magnolia, tulip trees, redbud, dogwood, Bradford pear, apple, peach, and lots and lots of budding stuff, all sending pollen into the atmosphere right into my lungs (earmarked esp. for me) but very few cherry trees. The ice storm a few years ago took most of what we had, so people lost heart with that experiment. Love them though. I would love to have them added to our pollen count, along with lots of orange blossoms, but……it just ain’t happenin’ here. Love the photos, no pollen from them.

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  10. I have no knowledge of anything floral and fauna, other than personal knowledge of whether I like it or not. ๐Ÿ™‚ I would go to the Cherry Blossom Festival if time, money, travel and all magically came together to make it happen. I would love to tour our capital. And I think my favorite picture is the last one, of the tree at the corner of the building, the darkness of the tree against the white of the building. The pink of the flower. It just feels pleasing to the eye.

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  11. I would and have made the trip up to DC for the cherry blossoms and loved every fabulous moment of it. Now I see that tomorrow’s post is the White House? That I haven’t done yet. Waiting with bated breath……

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  12. nature does whatever it wants i think – it’s full of surprises and doesn’t keep to our timetable at all. I like the photos – can’t wait to get to the White House tomorrow!! Hope the bees kept well away from you!

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  13. Oh, beautiful. We like to pretend our apple blossoms are cherry blossoms but we both know they’re not as good, and they won’t happen for another month and a half anyway (still snowing here). We’ll eventually get around to our festival – tulips – but those occasionally have to poke through snow too.

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  14. So lovely! I have got to get my butt over there during the festival, some year pronto!! I love the pic of Mrs. B standing next to the tree and looking up. ๐Ÿ™‚ And the one with the bud is spectacular. Nice job, Mr. B! ๐Ÿ™‚

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  15. Most of the white blooms around here right now are Bradford pears, but they look similar to cherries which are probably what’s mostly around DC.

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  16. It’s too bad Neil couldn’t have played this weekend. The blossoms are apparently peaking soon.

    Since this was a point of controversy last year, I’m hesitant to mention it, but it’s something that makes sense when you think about it: while the trees make for beautiful photo opportunities, especially for adorable little girls in their Easter finery, it’s against the rules to climb on them and park rangers are in the uncomfortable position of asking people not to do that. The trees are delicate and if everyone who visited climbed them, it would cause damage and eventually no trees to look at. Loving seeing the city through your lens!

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    • I totally get the no climbing rule, Hippie. It appeared to me that the Cheery Blossom girls were perched in an older growth tree of a different species at the foot of the Mall, before crossing the street to the ring of the Tidal Basin. The wood was very thick and grainy, unlike the others, and it had no buds at all on it yet.

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  17. I am no expert on cherry tree blossoms Mark but I know this. I love our BC cherries, both Bing and Reiner cherries, and when they are in season, I have been known to eat so many in one sitting that I get a tummy ache!

    Love the photos and can only imagine the heavenly scent of all those blossoms. โค
    Diana xo

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  18. I haven’t been to DC in quite some time, I did have the opportunity to be there while the cherry blossoms were in bloom and it was magnificent. I don’t know that I’d plan a trip specifically for the festival now that I live so far away, so I’ll have to enjoy it vicariously! Thanks for sharing your vacation ๐Ÿ™‚

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  19. Tears are in my eyes. Mark, you have given me HOPE today that I too shall see buds like these. Today in fact I go and look for buds on trees because YOU inspired me to do it. Beautiful post, my cuz. Just beautiful. Thank YOU!!! Love, Amy โค

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    • The yellow Forsythia were striking on their own, Joey. I didn’t put a folder for them, thought, because we have a big one in our front hourglass garden right here at the Little Bitty, so I’m spoiled, I think.

      Those little girls were giggling away. I had to catch it!

      Liked by 1 person

  20. I don’t think I could pick a fav photo, Mark.
    The one of the Cherry Blossom girls (or Cheery Blossom girls) brings a huge smile, you perfectly captured their joy without even showing their faces, amazing.
    Yet the picture, ‘Blooming at the Federal Reserve’ is eye candy…the majestic tree, the clean lines of the building, the hedges and the people – my eye kept going back to them and wondering about their stories.
    ‘Flower Power’ made me want to sneeze even looking at it.
    Nope, I can’t decide, they’re all wonderful.
    Had to share. ๐Ÿ™‚
    Thanks for the great post and the virtual trip. ๐Ÿ™‚

    Liked by 1 person

    • Wonderful comments, Donna. What an addition to my post! They are forever in my mind now ‘The Cheery Blossom Girls.’ Thank you, thank you, my friend. ๐Ÿ™‚

      We saw so many cool buildings and lines like the Federal Reserve. And you’re right. All those people, so many mysteries to me. ๐Ÿ˜‰

      Liked by 1 person

  21. So much pink! Favorite photo was, “Hello bud” – very cute, Mark! Loved seeing the paddle boats in the background as well, since we did that when we were there last. Still haven’t made it there in time to see the blossoms, but hope to in the future. Looks like you had a great time!

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