Philly’s cherry blossoms are blooming just a bit late despite a warm winter

The blooming trees are a sign it's time to evaluate how well your trees survived the winter, says one local arborist.

A close-up of white cherry blossoms on a cherry blossom tree.

A white cherry blossom tree frames 8th Street in Chinatown. (Kimberly Paynter/WHYY)

It’s a sure sign that spring is here: The cherry blossoms are blooming in Philadelphia and the surrounding area.

It also means now is the time to plan for summer beauty in your garden.

Certified arborist and tree safety specialist Michael Halloran of Davey Tree of Wilmington says the cherry blossoms are actually blooming a tad late this year.

“You would tend to think that the bloom would be a little early just because of the relatively mild winter we had,” Halloran said. “But we’re actually finding it’s a tad late. They’re talking peak bloom now for Philly areas like end of March, which is a week or two later than in past years, which is interesting.”

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor
An arborist is visible working on a tree, high up in the green-leafed branches.
An arborist works on tree. (Courtesy Davey Tree)

He said the mild winter has brought out many blooming flora.

“Tulips, daffodils, forsythia. We’ve already passed some bloom periods for witch hazel and things like that are really more of a late winter bloom as opposed to an early spring,” he said. “Daffodils are in full bloom right now, tulips are starting to pop up. Not quite in flower yet, but daffodils are looking great right now.”

For those with trees in their yard, Halloran says it’s a good time to do your own preliminary survey to make sure there is no winter damage and to be sure trees on your property have survived the winter intact.

“It’s a great time to look for structural defects, you know, branch attachments, hollow spots in trees, and things like that.”

If you have a concern, Halloran says many tree specialists will offer a free tree survey and will often catch things a normal person won’t see.

He recommends having a professional come out twice a year to look at your trees, once before they leaf and once after to check for trouble spots. He says if problems are detected early enough, tree damage can be fixed.

  • WHYY thanks our sponsors — become a WHYY sponsor

Get daily updates from WHYY News!

WHYY is your source for fact-based, in-depth journalism and information. As a nonprofit organization, we rely on financial support from readers like you. Please give today.

Want a digest of WHYY’s programs, events & stories? Sign up for our weekly newsletter.

Together we can reach 100% of WHYY’s fiscal year goal