Thursday, May 15, 2008
Prunus x yedoensis
While I was cleaning off one of memory cards I came across these photos of Yoshino Cherry. It is a spectacular tree that was in full bloom the day I took the photos (April 18th, just north of NYC). This tree grows to about 50 feet although if you start out pruning it when it is young it can be held much lower. It is easy to get a nice shape out of the Oriental branching pattern. I was surprised this tree is hardy to USDA Zone 5. They should be planted in full sun with good drainage. The bark and yellow fall color are nice for the fall and winter seasons. These photos were taken of one tree out of a group of several. I noticed some of the others had a slight pink tinge to the flowers.
This is the tree (along with the Kwanzan Cherry) of the Washington, DC Cherry Blossom Festival. I read recently that actually Macon, Georgia has more of these trees than DC does. There are a few cultivars available including ‘Akebona’ (soft pink flowers), ‘Perpendens’ (irregular weeping branches) and ‘Shidare Yoshino’.
In Japan there is a legend that each spring a fairy maiden hovers low in the warm sky to wake the sleeping Cherry trees to life with her delicate breath.
“Break open a cherry tree and there are no flowers, but the spring breeze brings forth myriad blossoms.”