10 Best Cherry Blossoms Facts That You Never Knew Before
Blooming cherry blossom trees go hand in hand with the arrival of spring, but have you ever wondered about the history of these pretty pink flowers? Well, we have all the cherry blossoms facts that you should know before traveling to see this spring event this year in some of the most beautiful places in the US. Cherry blossoms, which symbolize renewal, have quite the surprising backstory.
You can educate your friends and family on some of these interesting cherry blossom facts.
1. George Washington didn’t actually chop down a cherry tree.
You may have heard the story of America’s first president damaging his father’s cherry tree with a hatchet as a young boy. When confronted about it, he allegedly confessed and said, “I cannot tell a lie.” While it’s an admirable anecdote about honesty, this is actually a myth made up by one of George Washington’s biographers, Mason Locke Weems.
2. The flower petals are edible.
The cherry blossoms and the leaves are edible and used in many traditional Japanese sweets and tea. They are first pickled and then used in recipes for mochi cakes, candies, and even cookies. You can also brew sakura blossom tea or make cocktails with preserved blossoms.
3. Flowering cherry trees are largely ornamental.
This branch of trees is largely for looks as opposed to fruit production. Ornamental cherry trees do produce fruit closely related to edible cherries, these trees are usually grown for their beauty.
5 400 cherry trees in Amsterdam are individually named. All of the 400 cherry trees in Amsterdam’s Amsterdamse Bos are named. In 2000, the Japan Women’s Club donated the trees to the city to celebrate the two nations’ relationship.
4. You can get arrested for breaking off a blossom.
Yep, think again before you decide to pluck one of these pink beauties. Removing a blossom or branch is considered vandalism of federal property in Washington, D.C., which can lead to a citation or even an arrest.
6. Cherry trees have a short lifespan.
Typically, they only last about 16-20 years. But certain species have a much longer life expectancy. Black cherry trees, for example, can live up to 250 years.
7. Picnicking beneath cherry blossom trees is a Japanese tradition.
The century-old custom is known as “hanami,” which means flower viewing. Early records hint that the tradition began with emperors and members of the Imperial Palace feasting under the trees’ blooming branches.
8. Peak bloom is usually around April 4.
Peak bloom varies each year in Washington D.C., but typically occurs around April 4 and can last up to 14 days. The peak bloom is the day when 70 percent of the Toshino cherry trees are open.
9. Cherry blossoms symbolize renewal
Known as “sakura” in Japanese, these pale blooms are a symbol of spring because it is a time of renewal. However, because the blooms are short-lived, they are also symbolic of the fleeting nature of life.
10. Cherry blossom ice cream is a real thing.
Baskin Robbins Japan rereleased a limited edition cherry blossom ice cream flavor in 2016. Häagen-Dazs also released a short-run cherry blossom pint for Valentine’s Day in the UK in 2018.
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