Monday evening bloom update: After a high of 80° at Reagan National, the cherry blossoms are blooming quick. A noticeable difference from yesterday with much more 'white' seen along the National Mall. After another mild night tonight and warm day tomorrow, the Stormwatch 7 weather team feels confident the cherry blossoms will be at their peak by Wednesday and Thursday.
What perfect timing, too! The forecast for the next few days is almost summer-like. Partly cloudy skies, breezy southwesterly winds, and highs well above average are expected through Thursday. Changes arrive late Thursday into Friday, as a cold front slides through, so now's the time to check out the beautiful blossoms!
Monday morning update: The forecast for the peak bloom of the Cherry Blossoms has been delayed twice already and if you were like me and headed to the festival this weekend, you may have been a little bummed. This is what the majority of trees looked like on Sunday afternoon.
- Sunday Afternoon
There were 2 or 3 trees that were in full bloom and looked like this.
- A Few Trees Peaking
You can imagine that there were a bunch of people crowded around those few trees and were taking pictures. The National Parks Service was expecting peak late last week. By my estimation, it stands at about 20%. If you look at this photo of the MLK Memorial, you can see the light pink starting up.
- Estimating 20% in Bloom
That's what the majority of the area looked like, still pretty. The weather was beautiful, so it was still an enjoyable time. We hit a high of 71 degrees on Sunday. It did feel a little cooler with the brisk winds (and made it a bit tough getting my family's paddle boat back at the dock!). I am not a Cherry Blossom expert and I am not an Arborist. But, based on what I know about the warm weather this week (80s on Wednesday!), and the research that I've done, I have made a prediction that peak bloom is about 4 days out or so... Peak bloom is when trees have 70% of the flowers open.
- Petal Prediction
But, there is a bit of a hiccup if you want to go on day number 4 which is Friday. Rain is on the way. A strong cold front will bring thunderstorms Thursday afternoon/evening and then end with rain on Friday morning with cooler temperatures to follow. Check out the 7day forecast here. If our winds get strong enough in those thunderstorms, that could bring down quite a few petals. So, if we look at the combination of nice weather and best opportunity to see the most petals, Wednesday may be the best day. As always, we love to share your photos. Keep them coming to www.wjla.com