UPDATE 3/19/13, 11:30 AM: The National Park Service on Tuesday postponed the projected peak blossoming date for the cherry blossoms from next week until between April 3 and 6. This is due to a cold snap that is expected to last through next week. The National Cherry Blossom Festival begins Wednesday and runs through April 14, putting the peak blooming period right in the middle of the festivities. Read the original story below.
The people who look out for the cherry blossoms gave assurances Monday that the snow
flurries and cold weather will likely not have an impact on the expected peak bloom
dates of between March 26 and 30. National Park Service experts plan to give them
a look during the day. “They may reassess,” says
Carol Johnson, the spokesperson for NPS’s National Mall and Memorial Parks, “but the good thing
is they haven’t blossomed yet.”
Johnson says if the blossoms had already begun to open, “the snow could knock them
off. That’s what you don’t want to have happen. Right now they are moving along, but
they are still pretty compact. This snow won’t have an effect. At this point the prediction
hasn’t changed.” She says the only thing at this point that could delay their opening
“is a prolonged period of cold.” The ten-day forecast is for temperatures to remain
in the 40s and 50s.
The Park Service plans to post updates on the cherry blossoms, and their blooming schedule, through its website. Any changes will appear there first.