WASHINGTON

It's Almost Time! Cherry Blossom Peak Bloom Dates Announced

Mark your calendar! The National Park Service says the Tidal Basin will burst with cherry blossoms in just a few weeks. 

Peak bloom is expected to arrive between March 17 and March 20.

Peak bloom means at least 70 percent of the trees around Washington, D.C.'s Tidal Basin are blossoming. Once peak bloom is reached, the blossoms can remain on the trees from four to 10 days. 

Right now, the Yoshino cherry trees are in the green bud stage, the first of six stages that culminate in peak bloom. 

Wind gusts between 50 and 65 mph are expected to arrive in the D.C. area Friday, but Mike Litterst with the National Park Service says the buds should be OK.

"Winds should not be a problem to the buds themselves. Biggest concern is branches that may snap or break because of the high winds, but the buds themselves are fine," Litterst said. 

Last year's peak bloom was predicted to happen between March 14 through March 17, but a cold snap damaged some of the blossoms and pushed peak bloom back five days. 

The cherry blossoms that survived the snowy cold snap were just as impressive as ever, with crowds packing the Tidal Basin to catch a glimpse.  

This year's National Cherry Blossom Festival will be held from March 20 until April 15. 

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