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Sakura Watch May 22, 2018 – Akebono and Fugenzo trees are in full bloom

Sakura Watch May 22, 2018 – Akebono and Fugenzo trees are in full bloom in High Park! These are the last, late blooming sakura blossoms. With their large, white and pink puffy features, they are easy to spot being the only flowering trees near where the other cherry blossoms bloomed just a couple weeks ago.

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

Akebono and Fugenzo in full bloom

The Akebono and Fugenzo trees have much larger and more resilient flowers and tend to last for 2 weeks or more. Their size and volume allow them to more easily stand up to the wind and rain – their only real enemy is high heat which will begin to whither the petals and fall off. They do get some added protection from the large orange and copper coloured leaves which then begin to fade into green as the season progresses.

These trees can be spotted in 3 locations:

  1. Three (3) trees near the bottom section of the High Park Trail cherry hill;
  2. Five (5) trees between the Maple Leaf garden and Grenadier Pond;
  3. One (1) pink blossom tree near the Grenadier Pond dock.

The Akebono and Fugenzo trees have a unique beauty that is all their own, and still offers one last chance to enjoy sakura blossoms for the 2018 season.

Final 2018 Sakura Watch // Thank you!

This now concludes and wraps up 2018 Sakura Watch season. Thank you all so much for following here and on the various social media sites. I hope you enjoyed this video series so please feel free to comment below, on YouTube or anywhere else you see the videos to let me know your thoughts on how I can improve things next year.

In the weeks ahead I’m planning on adding features and videos to enhance this site and welcome any feedback. I appreciate all the support you have given to me and look forward to posting again soon!

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Sakura Watch May 18, 2018 – Late bloomers have begun

Sakura Watch May 18, 2018 – Late bloomers have begun to display their larger, fluffy flowers in High Park. Though there are only a handful of the Akebono and Fugenzo trees, they offer some beautiful blossoms of their own to enjoy for those who may have missed the Yoshino trees white blossoms. And as of today, visitors to the park expecting to see the white blossoms will be disappointed to only see those sakura trees fully going to leaf.

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

Akebono and Fugenzo have begun to open

The late blooming Akebono and Fugenzo trees have started to display their larger, fluffy flowers and should be in full bloom within a few days! The flowers are much larger then the smaller, delicate Yoshino variety and also more resilient. Due to their size and multiple layers of petals, they tend to hang down toward the ground and are accented by the orange and copper coloured leaves.

These trees can be spotted near the bottom section of the High Park Trail hill and a few more located a bit farther down the path between the ‘maple leaf’ garden and Grenadier Pond. What the lack in sheer numbers, they make up in impact as visitors will surely be hard pressed to miss these trees in all their puffy blossom glory once they fully bloom.

Rainy Saturday will slow them down, but with sunny days following into Victoria Day Monday, they should be nearly all open by then and throughout the upcoming week!

On that note I wish everyone a fun & safe Victoria Day weekend and will be back with more updates on these trees after the holiday!

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Sakura Watch May 16, 2018 – Last few days of blossoms

Sakura Watch May 16, 2018 – Last few days of blossoms to view in High Park as the season winds down for 2018. Rain and wind over the past week have knocked down the majority of cherry blossoms, cutting short the amount of time we had to enjoy the full bloom. Visually speaking, most trees are down to much less than 25%. But there were a few trees with blossoms down by the lower part of the Hillside Trail and along the shore of Grenadier Pond.

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

Shower of blossom petals

The wind has played its part by blowing off the remaining blossoms and visitors could be seen taking in the shower of delicate, white, blossom petals. This has its own magic beauty to experience on its own as hearing the sounds of the wind in the trees and feeling the petals land on you, almost tickling in a way of one last reminder of the special place these trees hold in our hearts.

Little, if any, blossoms to view May long weekend

Sadly, with the falling blossoms also mean the viewing season is soon to end. With more rain in the forecast this week, chances of seeing any last few blossoms remain slim over the May long weekend. My next visit on Friday will confirm how true this may be.

Late blooming Akebono and Fugenzo

The one bright spot of note is that the Akebono and Fugenzo trees are only now beginning to get ready for their big debut! Flower buds are already seen ready to open with many more likely a week away. I’ll be watching these trees next as they share their own unique beauty and help stretch the sakura hanami season a little longer. Stay tuned for more updates soon!

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Sakura Watch May 10, 2018 – Many blossoms survive thunderstorm

Sakura Watch May 10, 2018 – Many blossoms survive thunderstorm that rolled through High Park overnight.  The rain did knock down some cherry blossoms, but thankfully there are still plenty left to see! Overall it appears that about 25-50% of the blossoms were knocked down which leaves a large percentage of blossoms intact to view throughout the park!

Though the viewing time to enjoy the blossoms has been shortened this year, the fact that much of the bloom remains intact offer the opportunity for blossom enthusiasts to visit the park on Thursday and Friday.

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

A little less then full bloom

With about 50-70% of sakura cherry blossoms remaining, there are still a great number of blossoms to enjoy throughout High Park.

Thursday May 10 and Friday May 11 offer a couple more chances to see them, but don’t wait too long! The petals are beginning to fall, which in itself is a beautiful sight to see, but that also means that there will be less and less blossoms to see with each passing day.

And as a reminder to let nature drop the blossom petals naturally – please don’t shake the branches when taking photos!

See the photo gallery of today’s visit :

My not be much left on Mother’s Day

Saturday rain may leave Mother’s Day with only 25% of blossoms left to view, however that may change depending on how much rain actually does fall and knock down the blossoms. Different areas of the park may be more sparse then others as well, and as always it really comes down to the weather and how much havoc it reigns on the trees.

However you do celebrate this Mother’s Day, let us also remember to take into account our mother earth as well and all these amazing gifts she shares with us, such as the cherry blossoms! Wish everyone has a wonderful holiday and enjoyable time with your mom! Stay tuned for more updates soon!

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Sakura Watch May 9, 2018 – Its now full bloom in High Park

Sakura Watch May 9, 2018 – Its now full bloom in High Park, and with large crowds beginning to fill up the park in the mornings and scarce parking available, the annual sakura hanami is well underway in the park. The viewing time to enjoy the blossoms will be bried this year due to predicted rains and thunderstorms overnight into Thursday. If there is heavy rain, it threatens to knock down some blossoms on Thursday, meaning there may be more of the sakura cherry blossoms on the ground instead of the trees.

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

Full Bloom throughout High Park

After months of frustratingly cold weather, the anticipation of spring and long wait was finally over! Blossom enthusiasts making the journey to High Park today, were welcomed with the beautiful visual spectacle of seeing ALL the cherry blossom trees with 90 – 100% open blossoms.

After a few disappointing years with either little or no blossoms to view, 2018 redeemed itself, and proved to be a great comeback year with the sakura trees looking much fuller and brighter.

Serene and fluffy clouds of white blossoms floated above smiling faces all along the meandering High Park Trail down towards Grenadier Pond.

See the photo gallery of today’s visit (I planned to shoot more photos, but forgot to pack a spare battery 🙄 ):

More rain on way into Mother’s Day

Unfortunately, the days of full bloom viewing is cut short this year due to potential rainfall. The hope is that the rain on Thursday may be light enough to allow the blossoms to survive until Friday to gain at least 2 more days to enjoy the bloom.

Then looking towards Saturday, larger amounts of rain will likely knock down many of the blossoms, which will disappoint many people’s Mother’s Day weekend plans.

On a brighter note, at least the High Park Zoo Llamas got their chance to take in the blossoms as well. You heard right – Llamas were enjoying the cherry blossoms.

Stay tuned for more updated soon!

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Sakura Watch May 5-6, 2018 – Bloom has begun in High Park

Sakura Watch May 5-6, 2018 – Bloom has begun in High Park, and with visits on both Saturday and Sunday, this latest updated highlights how quickly the blossoms are opening up. The sunny and warm weather have accelerated the bloom over the last couple days and the ideal viewing time is going to be this week between Monday and Wednesday before rain threatens to knock down the blossoms on Thursday, and even more so over Mother’s Day weekend.

 

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

Media coverage over weekend

Saturday began with recording a BlogTO podcast with new host Dani Stover. It was a lot of fun and am looking forward to listening to her series soon and will post our session once its available.

Then on Sunday evening I had the chance to do a Live CityNews interview with Stella Acquisto, where we talked about how upcoming rain will effect the overall bloom dates. Our interview is posted on my YouTube channel and will can be view here.

The question I get most asked is what are the best dates to view the bloom? The answer is this week between May 7-9th when the trees will reach 75-100% bloom by mid week.

The cherry blossoms have started to open all over the park and continue to bloom a little more each day.

See the photo gallery of today’s visit:

Bloom may get washed out before Mother’s Day

With rain forecast for Thursday and even more to come on Mother’s Day weekend, the blossoms may get knocked down resulting in less bloom to see going into Sunday. This means there may only be a good 4-5 days of full bloom this year

I’ll be posting more updates over the week to see the progress of the trees and see if they survive the Thursday rainfall. Stay tuned for more updated soon!

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Sakura Watch May 4, 2018 – First blossom seen in High Park

Sakura Watch May 4, 2018 – First blossom seen in High Park this morning. My day began with a radio interview with Michael Kramer of Classical FM and ZoomerMedia. Later while I began filming for today’s Sakura Watch update, I spotted someone taking a picture of something white on the side of a tree. I had not walked up that way yet but immediately I know what it had to be! So I ran over to the tree, and lo and behold, I discovered the first blossoms of 2018!

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

Few Blossoms began to open today, many more to come

Everywhere I looked, bud florets were extended with deep pink closed petal tips. With a few more sunny days, we should see a full bloom by mid-week and continue through the coming weekend. With the first blossoms already opening this of weekend between May 4-6th, the peak bloom is on track to be at its fullest between May 9-12th this year.

See the photo gallery of today’s visit:

Bloom may last to Mother’s Day

Of course weather will be the deciding factor as always. Rain & wind could knock off petals at cut viewing times short, however I’ll be posting more updates over the coming week to see the progress of the trees. Also watch for links to the radio interview with Michael as well as a few other upcoming interviews in the week ahead. Stay tuned for more updated soon!

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Sakura Watch May 1, 2018 – Bloom dates confirmed!

Sakura Watch May 1, 2018 – Bloom dates confirmed! The warmer weather has helped the cherry blossom trees, as they show definite signs of moving into the next stages of development. Most buds are well into the third stage and beginning to show signs of florets. A few trees have jumped ahead even further into the forth stage, with the buds showing distinct, deep pink florets. Theses trees will be the ones to show us the first blossoms of 2018!

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

Blossom dates confirmed for 2018

Today’s update finally confirms my original predictions on when we will see the full bloom. Based on the observations, we should start to see the first blossoms this weekend between May 4-6th, and then the peak bloom should be at its fullest between May 9-12th this year.

See the photo gallery of today’s visit:

Bloom may last to Mother’s Day

Of course weather will be the deciding factor as always. Rain & wind could knock off petals at cut viewing times short, however I’ll be posting more updates later this week and be watching the forecasts to offer my best opinions on what to expect. Time and weather will tell! Stay tuned for more updated soon!

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Sakura Watch April 27, 2018 – Warmer weather speeds development

Sakura Watch April 27, 2018 – Warmer weather speeds development of the buds on the cherry blossom trees throughout High Park. The buds have clearly decided to grow into distinct shapes that are either round and swollen or elongated and pointy. Their true identities will be known soon enough, as even warmer days are coming early next week!

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

Clear definition of round and elongated buds

Seeing how the cherry blossom trees have taken advantage of the warming weather trend, bud development overall has accelerated to the point where this is now a clear definition of round and elongated buds.

See the photo gallery of today’s visit:

The round, swollen buds have developed well into the third stage and are the ones most likely to bloom into cherry blossoms. The other elongated, pointy buds are mixed, with some hinting they may blossom, and others look more likely to leaf. The difference isn’t always easy to predict until I can start to see the tips opening up in the fourth and fifth stages of development.

May Mother’s Day Surprise?

Though it last happened in 2015 when we saw a bloom on Mother’s Day weekend, all indicators are suggesting that the full bloom this year is likely to occur around that date. Whether its before, during or after is still a bit difficult to say with 100% accuracy, however if the upcoming temperature rises of next week help boost the buds development, then it could be the dates to watch!

Time and weather will tell! Stay tuned for more updated soon!

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Sakura Watch April 21, 2018 – Spring is finally here

Sakura Watch April 21, 2018 – Spring is finally here and and on this warm and sunny Saturday, High Park was full of happy people to enjoy it! With the weather now finally turning for the better over the coming week, sights are not set on seeing how quickly the trees will move into the next stages of development.

Watch the latest video update from YouTube:

 

Well into second stage

The buds overall are well into the second development stage, especially along the big hill and winding path (near Grenadier Restaurant), with many more of them displaying round, green tips. This area is shaping up to have a very good showing this year if the buds progress as they should in the weeks ahead.

Another observation has been seeing a number of trees showing more elongated, pointy buds instead of the usual well shaped, round ones. In past years, elongated buds would go to leaf rather than blossom during the bloom. There is still a chance that some of these may be smaller blossom buds that were stunted by all the cold weather. Time will tell in the weeks ahead what can be expected.

See the photo gallery of today’s visit:

Attention now on bloom dates

Now that it appears warmer days are finally here to stay, I can now focus on watching for signs of the next stages. More observations are needed to see when the trees will begin to develop further, but for now early to mid May still seem like safe approximate target dates.

Hopefully the warmer weather forecast this will help improve the buds development times as the sooner they advance, the better chance of seeing more blossoms develop. Stay tuned for more updated soon!