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Peak Bloom Should Outlast This Week’s Rain

Good news if you can't make it down to the Tidal Basin right away

Photograph by Evy Mages

It’s peak bloom time in Washington, the period when more than 70 percent of the flowers on the Yoshino cherry trees around the Tidal Basin are at their most fulsome.

Tuesday’s weather is splendid, but showers loom in the forecast Wednesday and Thursday. This doesn’t mean you have to drop everything and head down to the Tidal Basin, says National Park Service spokesperson Mike Litterst: “We’re so early in peak bloom that the blossoms are still relatively strong and the petals are still holding on tight,” he says.

High winds and heavy rain are much more dangerous for the blossoms, Litterst says. And the dip in temperatures that also approaches means peak bloom may persist well into next week: cooler air “will slow the movement of the trees from blossoms to leaves, so we should get a week to 10 days out of the blossoms,” Litterst says.

Senior editor

Andrew Beaujon joined Washingtonian in late 2014. He was previously with the Poynter Institute, TBD.com, and Washington City Paper. His book A Bigger Field Awaits Us: The Scottish Soccer Team That Fought the Great War was published in 2018. He lives in Del Ray.