The cherry blossoms are predicted to be early this year in 2023. According to the National Park Service they will be at peak bloom from March 22-25. I guess we all are ready for spring to be here, including the cherry trees themselves.
The cherry trees at the Tidal Basin are world famous. When you walk around the Tidal Basin to see the blossoms, you hear so many languages being spoken - but there are also SO many people walking around, snapping selfies, trying to capture a National Geographic worthy photo of the trees framing the Tidal Basin and the Jefferson Memorial. All those crowds really do take some of the pleasure out of the trip to the Tidal Basin. (No wonder a few years ago those beavers were trying to take the cherry trees down by chewing away their trunks!)
So.... if you really want to see cherry blossoms, where else can you go? Turns out there are lots of other options. Here are a few of my favorites!
1. Take a bike ride around Hains Point in East Potomac Parks it comes alive with white and pink petals lining the entire drive. (Ohio Drive) Since this is so close to the Tidal Basin, it will be crowded, but probably not as crowded as the Tidal Basin along Independence Avenue.
2. Did you know that a grove of trees near the Lincoln Memorial Beach Volleyball Courts are cherry trees? You are close to the monuments here but away from most of the crowds! (Rock Creek and Potomac Pkwy NW)
3. Stanton Park on Capital Hill is a popular neighborhood year round, but you may want to check out the blossoming trees surrounding the central statue of Gneral Nathanael Green at 4th St NE.
4. The LeDroit Park iron arch at 16th and Florida Avenue NW is a beautiful location all year round, but it is particularly attractive in the spring when the cherry blossoms surrounding it burst into bloom.
5. If you are feeling spiritual, you should check out the cherry blossoms at the Bishop's Garden at the National Cathedral. I love the Bishop's Garden anyway and when the cherry trees bloom so close to the Cathedral, it is a stunning view. (3101 Wisconsin Avenue) If your tastes are more Catholic than Episcopalian - or you are in the eastern part of the city, you might visit the Basilica of the Shrine of the Immaculate Conception. There are several trees there in the grass around the dome. (Michigan Avenue)
6. Dumbarton Oaks' gardens just above Georgetown are dotted with cherry blossoms. Garden admission is $7 but you can visit the museum afterwards or the nearby Book Hill park for more blossoms. (R St NW) or the nearby Book Hill Park for more cherry trees.
1. The most famous location in Maryland is Bethesda's Kenwood neighborhood. The streets are lined with cherry blossoms and people taking pictures. If it is possible to find someplace else to park and then walk into the neighborhood, it makes a lovely afternoon.
2. Glenstone Museum in Potomac has several flowering trees, including cherry blossoms, magnolias, and yellow sassafrass. Book a timed pass for the museum after exploring the gardens and grounds. (Glen Road)
3. The Brookside Gardens in Wheaton have at least nin themed gardens across 50 acres. Two of the ponds are surrounded by cherry trees in addition to the other flowers and plants there. Happily, admission is free there. (Glenellen Avenue)
1. Old Town Alexandria has cherry trees scattered throughout the city but if you want to centralize your search you should visit Founders Park along the Potomac River and the 100 block of Wolfe Street. Then of course, you get to find a great little restaurant for lunch along King Street. (Union Street)
2. Stunning views of the Potomac River and cherry blossom trees combine with history at the entrance and gardens of River Farm. The American Horticultural Society’s headquarters is located at River Farm near Mount Vernon, which once was part of George Washington’s original farmland. (E Boulevard Drive)
The last suggestion is of course to buy a home in the DC metro area and plant your own cherry trees! I have one in my front yard that Montgomery County planted for me for free. It is nearly finished blooming now, but it has been a source of joy for the last few weeks, reminding me that spring is coming. if this sounds like a plan, give us a call at the Lise Howe Group at 240-401-5577 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. We would love to help you find a home in the area that will let you have your own cherry tree!
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