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D.C.'s blast of snow stopped the cherry blossoms cold; only half survived. Now what?

March 14 to 17 was supposed to be the earliest peak bloom ever for the famed Japanese cherry trees along the Tidal Basin and Potomac Park in Washington, D.C.

But last Tuesday brought snow instead of clusters of fluffy white flowers to the nation’s capital.

Half the Yoshino trees lost their blossoms (peak is defined as when 70% bloom) after temperatures dipped into the 20s during the cold blast.

Now the remaining half of the Yoshino cherry blooms are expected to peak now through Wednesday, according to the Bloom Watch website.

Some “advanced stage blossoms” had begun early in March (the website shows five stages the trees go through, from green bud to blossom).

"There was almost complete loss of those emerging blossoms," Mike Litterst of the National Park Service told a local NBC news station.

Despite the downer news, the National Cherry Blossom Festival got underway last Wednesday and continues through April 2. Opening ceremony is set for March 25, and a parade follows on April 1.

And this won’t be your only chance to see blossoms.

Another variety of cherry trees called Kwanzans that grow around the basin and in Potomac Park bloom later. They are predicted to pop April 10 to 13.


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