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Plants & Gardens Blog

First Blooms in the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden

Of the 26 flowering cherry trees on display in the Japanese Hill-and-Pond Garden, 15 began to bloom this week and are holding their blossoms despite the rain. The majority of these trees are Prunus subhirtella 'Pendula', often called weeping cherries. In BBG's collection there are both white and pink varieties. Weeping cherries have been cultivated in Japan for centuries and are often referred to as ito-zakura ("thread cherry") in poems and literature. The thin branches weep because of their fast growing habit and do indeed look like threads blowing in the breeze before the blossoms emerge. The species was first introduced into Europe in 1862 by German physician and botanical collector Philipp Franz von Siebold. In addition to P. subhirtella 'Pendula' visitors to the Garden can also see Prunus sargentii 'Fudan-zakura' in peak bloom.

To see the stages of bloom of all the flowering cherry trees at BBG visit the CherryWatch map and follow us on Twitter for the latest bloom updates.

Rebecca Bullene is a former editor at Brooklyn Botanic Garden. She is the proprietor of Greenery NYC, a creative floral and garden design company that specializes in botanical works of art including terrariums, urban oasis gardens, and whimsical floral arrangements.


  • jblackburn August 16, 2011

    BBG’s Garden Shop does not carry flowering cherry trees, but the annual plant sale, held each May by the Brooklyn Botanic Garden Auxiliary, does sometimes offer them.

  • Tak Kojima August 4, 2011

    This is not comment, it’s a question: Do you sell Japanese cherry nursery tree? if so when is it available? and when to planting?
    thank you,
    Tak Kojima

  • Emmett Hoops April 17, 2011

    Thank you so much for putting these photos online.  For those of us who love the Garden but do not live nearby, it is wonderfully uplifting to (virtually) see the trees’ announcement of Spring!

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