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Japan Records Earliest Cherry Blossom in 1,200 Years

PostPosted: April 5th, 2021, 2:56 pm
by toucana
Cherry Blossom at Kitanomaru Park in Tokyo, Japan - March 23

In Japan the appearance of the cherrry blossom known as Sakura 桜 is one of the iconic symbols of the arrival of spring - white and pink flowers bursting across the cities and mountains, and petals covering the ground.

The flowers, which experience a "peak bloom" that only lasts a few days, have been revered in Japan for more than a thousand years. Crowds celebrate with viewing parties, flocking to the most popular locations to take photos and have picnics underneath the branches.

But this year, cherry blossom season has come and gone in the blink of an eye, in one of the earliest blooms on record -- and scientists warn it's a symptom of the larger climate crisis threatening ecosystems everywhere throughout the world.

Yasuyuki Aono, a researcher at Osaka Prefecture University, has gathered records from Kyoto back to 812 AD from historical documents and diaries. In the central city of Kyoto, cherry blossoms peaked on March 26, the earliest in more than 1,200 years, Aono said. And in the capital Tokyo, cherry blossoms reached full bloom on March 22, the second-earliest date on record.


“A symbol of the transience of things (mono no aware) since they die (fall) while still beautiful”