Legacy of a warm winter: D.C. cherry blossoms getting jump-start

The peak of the Washington cherry blossom show in the Tidal Basin area is notoriously variable, having arrived as late as April 18 after the stormy winter of 1967-58, and as early as March 15, following a January-February warm-up.

This is looking like one of those early years. As in the Philadelphia region, Washington’s February temperatures have been running 8-plus degrees above normal.

Green buds already are appearing on the Yoshino trees, according to the National Park Service, the earliest that’s happened since 2008 – another year that saw 70s in January and February — when they showed up on Feb. 19.

The park service cautions, however, that predicting the peak-blossom period outside of 10 days is pure folly.

The peak has occurred anywhere from two to four weeks after the onset of the green buds, and, naturally, the interval is weather dependent.

For updates, check out the park service site.