When Cherry Blossoms Will Be in Peak Bloom (and Where to Find Them)
Featuring a handy map.
Sure, we’re all still a little grumpy from having to set our clocks forward this month. (Admit it.) But with that and the recent arrival of spring, we can all take comfort in knowing that the best time of the year — peak cherry blossom season — is nearly upon us.
Mark your calendars: Everyone’s favorite pink flowers are expected to be fluffiest between April 10th and April 15th. Luckily for us, that aligns with the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia’s annual Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival, which will run from April 6th to 14th.
The best spot to peep the city’s cherry blossoms (in my opinion) is in West Fairmount Park, near the Shofuso House (which is run by the Japan America Society). Take a stroll along the park’s Avenue of the Republic between Belmont Avenue and the fountains near the Mann Center. The path runs between the small centennial and concourse ponds and is lined with wispy trees full of powder-pink flowers during bloom.
The Shofuso House itself is also surrounded by cherry blossoms, as well as the east side of Kelly Drive, around Girard Avenue. There are also trees outside the Fairmount Park’s Horticulture Center dating back to 1926 — they were a gift from the Japanese government in honor of the 150th anniversary of American independence.
Here’s a fun fact for you: Every year in Japan, forecasters and newscasters incorporate what’s called the “cherry blossom front,” or sakura zensen, into their weather reports. They broadcast the information to help others plan the best time to view and celebrate the trees. (With the Shofuso House and the Subaru Cherry Tree Festival, this is kind of a thing in Philly, too.)
The Cherry Blossom Festival includes more than a dozen events (from sushi-making classes to a sake garden). The main event — Sakura Sunday — will be held on April 14th at the Horticulture Center. It will include live performances, arts and crafts, tea, and more. Tickets costs $10 to $15.
Here’s a map of where to peep cherry blossoms this spring, courtesy of the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia.