Cherry Blossom or Cherry Flower is an outstanding beautiful flower of Japanese origin. The flower is widely known for its amazing looks, which attracts and makes one feel ecstatic. Hence, there is more to these pretty pink flowers than their attractiveness to the eyes. Seeing these pretty flowers signals the start of springtime, but have you ever wondered about their history? Cherry blossoms have quite a surprising backstory.
Between late March and mid-April, we witness a simply magnificent setting in a few countries like Japan, Canada, the US, and other places where cherry blossom trees are found. It is the time when the cherry trees are in bloom and their flowers, known as Sakura in Japan, with a very special meaning for the Japanese people. The cherry flower season is a major tourist attraction in any city that is lucky enough to plant these ornamental cherry trees. Thousands of tourists flock to Canada, the US, and mostly to Japan, to see one of the most beautiful spectacles of the country: the Cherry Blossom, also known as flowering cherry trees.
In Japan, the flower season represents the end of a cycle and the beginning of a new one. The month of April marks the beginning of the new academic and fiscal years and the debut of recent graduates in the labor market. And the beginning of spring in Japan, represented by the cherry blossoms. To represent all these events and changes, Hanami as they call the season happens.
7 Amazing Facts about Cherry Flower
Now you have known a bit about cherry flowers, how about getting to know some curiosities and amazing facts about these beautiful and iconic flowers?
You Will Only Find Cherry Blossoms In A Few Countries/Regions: The cherry blossoms in Yoshino and Kyoto are called sakura in Japan and are world-famous. Every spring, tourists flock to the country to participate in a centuries-old event “Hanami” (flower viewing). However, you do not have to fly to Japan to see them. In Canada and the United States, the cherry blossoms in Toronto’s High Park, Vancouver, Ottawa, Washington DC, New York City, San Francisco, and Boston are all beautiful in their own ways. These flowers can also be seen in some European and Asian countries, as well as Brazil and Australia in the southern hemisphere.
The Year For The Japanese Begins With The Cherry (Sakura) Blooming: Just as in Brazil, some say that the year only really begins after the carnival. In Japan, there is also the maxim that the year literally begins after the sakura blooms. That is because, despite Japan adopting the Gregorian calendar as well as Brazil, their fiscal and academic year begins in mid-April, coinciding with the spring and flowering of sakura.
There Is A Multitude Of Products Made From Cherry Flower: Cherry flower is used in making one of the most popular delicacies called, Sakura mochi. It is a Japanese sweet made from mochi and Anko wrapped in a lightly salted cherry leaf. The contrast between the leaf salty and the sweet Anko results in an interesting and appreciated flavor.
There is also a cherry blossom tea, a drink that consists of a mixture of cherry blossoms pickled with hot water. This tea is often served at formal events, such as weddings. But in addition to these traditional delicacies, we can find many seasonal products such as sweets, ice cream, soft drinks etc. made of cherry flowers .
Cherry Blossom Are Edible: In Japan, no part of the cherry tree is wasted, especially the flowers. The pickled leaves are used as edible rice cake wrappers – a rice cake with sweet bean paste inside –, and many seasonal snacks use cherry blossoms as the main ingredient. Pepsi, Coke, tea, and even the cherry blossom-flavored beverage of Starbucks Latte are very popular drinks. You can also find two variants of Kit Kats-cherry blossom and roasted soybeans, and cherry blossom wine, and Pocky snacks that taste like cherry blossom or green tea.
Dues to the cherry flower’s attraction, some accessories like a flower necklace pendant and earrings have been designed to look like the flower to represent the lovely flower fashionably.
During Flowering, It Is Common To Have A Picnic Under The Cherry Trees: Cities where cherry trees exist, witness, an influx of tourists during the cherry blossoms. Hanami is a very popular cherry blossom event in Japan when families and friends gather to eat and drink under the trees. And that happens not only during the day but at night as well. Cherry flowers are even more beautiful at night as they are lit with paper lanterns.
Cherry Petal Rain Also Has A Name: Each stage of cherry flowering is much celebrated, mostly in Japan, including the end it unleashes in a shower of petals. And there is a specific name for each one. The petals come off the branches and are blown away by the wind, coloring streets and stream pink. It may seem like a sad farewell, but at the same time very poetic and nostalgic.
Each Flowering Stage Has A Specific Name: In Japan, there is a specific name for each stage of flowering. There are seven stages that start from the bud until it reaches full bloom and consequently its fall. “Tsubomi” for example, refers to the button, while “sakihajime” is when the buds begin to bloom.
The next stages are “gobuzaki,” which means 50% flowery, and “shichibuzaki,” which means 70% flowery. The “Mankai” stage is when the cherry blossoms reach full bloom. This is the best time to enjoy cherry blossoms. Once the petals start to fall, it is called “chirihajime.”
Finally, the flowers make way for “hazakura,” which are the fresh green leaves that appear after the flowering period.