high park cherry blossoms 2017

High Park cherry blossoms peak bloom set for early May

The High Park Cherry Blossoms are expected to reach peak bloom in early May this year, with early signs promising a much better display than witnessed a year ago.

Right now, the consensus is that the sakura will bloom between May 3 and May 10. Both the High Park Nature Centre and Sakura in High Park have pegged this as the peak window for 2017, though they're also quick to note that it's still too early for definitive predictions.

The exception to these early May forecasts is High Park's website, which is calling for an earlier date of April 23-26.

Last year the cherry blossoms failed to reach peak bloom on account of variable weather through early spring that robbed the city of what has become a rite of passage each year. In the previous three years, peak bloom was reached on May 6, May 14, and May 4, respectively.

Forecasting peak bloom depends on observation of the trees' blossoming process, which is typically broken down into six stages.

Right now, the cherry blossoms appear to be on the cusp of stage two. Warm temperatures accelerate the blossoming process, while cool temperatures slow it down. Frost during the later stages can severely damage the vulnerable blossoms.

The good news is that Toronto's mild winter should bode well for a good display this year. Cold weather could still be damaging, but fingers crossed that the blossoms come along unharmed over the next few weeks.

Lead photo by

Kiril Strax


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