Reporting Rochelle Ritchie
WASHINGTON (WJZ) — The cherry blossoms in Washington, D.C. are in full bloom–a sure sign that spring is here and summer is not far away.
Rochelle Ritchie has more on the colorful sights and sounds.
A gift from Japan more than 100 years old is drawing millions to our nation’s capital. Cherry blossoms are in full bloom and their beauty has stood the test of time.
Puffs of flowers, blooming from the fragile limbs of the famous cherry blossom trees, are bringing the photographer out of millions of visitors.
“Any direction you turn there’s a great shot you can take,” a man said.
Thousands braved the warm sun to get a close look at the trees, considered the most beautiful landscape in the nation’s capital.
“It’s a concentration of one type of plant that isn’t in many places,” said a photographer.
The sprinkle of white and pink flowers decorate the edge of the tidal basin near the Jefferson and Martin Luther King Memorial.
“You feel giddy just seeing them massed together,” said tourist Chris Ebert.
The Cherry Blossom Festival is a national celebration in its 86th year.
“The restaurants get involved, the hotels get involved, our nation’s greatest cultural institutions and museums put on events just for the festival,” said Danielle Placente of the National Cherry Blossom Festival.
The trees didn’t grow in perfect formation on their own. They’re a century old gift from Japan.
Three thousand cherry blossoms were given to D.C. in 1912, and every year 1.2 million people come to see them in full bloom.
And they come from all over.
“I think it’s gorgeous. It’s beautiful, they’re all in bloom and everything is so clean you can smell them. It’s really magical,” said Caroline Bellina, a tourist from Montreal.
Even the locals are in awe of the delicate beauty celebrated for just a few weeks.
“We came out last week and it was cold and nothing was blooming,” a woman said.
“If you see a clump of them together it kind of looks like sticks with marshmallows on them,” said resident Katie Caldwell.
The cherry blossoms are in full bloom and could last 14 days.
The first white, puffy blooms were spotted April 4.