Vancouver Cherry Blossom Time – Spring at Last!

by admin - March 8th, 2012.
Filed under: Explore Vancouver. Tagged as: , , , , , , , , .

There are many wonderful times to come to Vancouver but one of our all time favorites is cherry blossom time!  We were very fortunate to open our Vancouver Bed & Breakfast for the Olympic Games in February, 2010, when the world saw Vancouver in all it’s glory with cherry trees in full bloom all over the city!  Not so great for the ski slopes but a stunning display, none the less.  This year winter seemed to have a tenacious hold that would never end but, just when we were starting to despair, we saw last week a glimmer of pink starting to form around the cherry trees as we were out for our run in the cold wind and rain.  We rubbed our eyes a couple of times, just in case, as it’s still be very cold for Vancouver in March – very close to freezing temperatures. But, sure enough, we ran by there again today and there they were – actual buds starting to open!  Yippee!  Spring at last!

Vancouver is blessed with several varieties of cherry trees that put on a continuing display of colour for as much as six or eight weeks every Spring, usually starting as early as February but much later this year.  We understand that the earliest variety, such as we just saw at the park on Victoria Drive, is the Whitcomb Flowering Higan Cherry – Prunus subhirtella “Whitcombii”.  Perhaps not the most spectacular variety but such a welcome sight as our winter fades into spring.  The photo to the right, just a quick snap with my phone camera this morning, is that of the first buds just peeking out.

My absolute favorite variety is the Yoshino – “Akebono” and Somei-yoshino – Prunus x yedoensis.  These gorgeous huge trees, such as you will see in a couple of weeks near Kits Beach or, closer to the Bee & Thistle Guest House, along the 3100 block of Gravely Street, bear huge clumps of pale pink to white blossoms that are nothing short of stunning.  If you are a photo enthusiast or just a fan of amazing natural beauty, don’t miss these beautiful trees.

But, of course, the dearest to our heart is the gorgeous display that appears in front of the Bee & Thistle, our very own Parker Street, as the final triumphant burst of bloom when the late blooming Kanzan – Prumus serrulata “Kwanzan” finally make their appearance.  The photo to the left is Parker street between our guest house and Commercial Drive. Anyone who has been to the Symphony of Fire fireworks display in Vancouver will be familiar with the huge burst of fireworks that constitutes the grande finale, and so the Kanzan is to the Cherry Blossom spectacle!  Large unbelievably deep pink double flowers hang in pendulous clusters then, as the flowers start to fade, rain down on the street and produce a carpet of pink blossom petals!