After over a year and a half of lacking visitors, Toronto’s renowned High Park Cherry Blossom Trees finally bloom to a stir-crazy public after many months or even years during the lockdown.
Blogger and self-proclaimed “Cherry blossom enthusiast” Steve Joniak, who follows and updates on High Park trees, notes that their slower than usual blooming is due to the weather, having something of a cold spell before becoming warm.
“It all comes down to the weather,” Said Joniak “the weather’s always the critical factor when it comes to exactly when the trees will bloom. When I first started the blog in 2012, we had a very mild, very warm winter and hardly any cold or snow and the trees actually bloomed in early April, 2 weeks ahead of schedule.”
The trees were given to the city of Toronto in 1959 by the Ambassador of Japan to showcase the friendship between the two countries, and are considered sacred, Joniak said.
“Cherry blossoms are of course are a very sacred symbol of Japan,” said Joniak “it’s their national flower”
Additional trees have been added over the years, with each planting commemorated by a new plaque.
The trees have lasted this long partially thanks to their upkeep by the city, with the only worry being possible severe weather.
“The city’s forestry department does an excellent job at maintaining them” said Joniak. “So there’s not too much threat we have to worry about unless there’s any kind of severe weather.”
This year, the city also will allow citizens to help with maintaining the health of the trees with donations.
Joniak says this will “help maintain the current trees and help supply and ad more trees in the future.”