Another beautiful day of cherry blossom viewing

After a first day of teleworking, I reward myself with one hour of cherry blossom viewing.

At this time, the instructions from the city of Vancouver regarding the control of COVID-19 say you’re allowed to go outside as long as you maintain social distancing and don’t congregate in groups.  This means no cherry blossom picnics, but  a quick walk by yourself in the neighbourhood is fine.

The Whitcomb cherry trees at Ayshire and Aubrey are fully bloomed. The flowers are beautiful. They’re buzzing with bees! Petals haven’t started to fall yet.

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This Accolade tree at Halifax and Kensington might be missing a branch or two, but the blossoms are splendid! Accolade are only about 20-30% bloomed in Burnaby, so you have another 7-10 days to visit.

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The Okame cherry tree at Charles and Fell might be slightly past its prime — lots of tiny petals on the ground, and most remaining blossoms have missing petals — but it’s such a rare tree that it’s worth a trip.  Visit within 5 days.

By the way, Okame have some of the smallest petals I’ve ever seen on the ground. So cute!

Tip: Visit in the morning or early afternoon. The sun set behind the house, which blocks the light. These pics were taken about 5 pm and there was only one ray of sunshine at the top of the canopy.

Also make sure to take a photo of the long calyx (the back of the flower), since that’s what this flower is famous for.

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I hope you’re taking care of yourself in these difficult times.If you are feeling stressed, go out and visit a cherry tree in your neighbourhood. (You can use the VCBF Neighbourhood map to find the trees blooming now in your area). And pleasee maintain social distancing.


Okame blossoms will brighten your day

Can you believe these are actually cherry blossoms?

Okame cherry tree

Okame cherry trees look totally different than other cherry trees with their small dark flowers on a long calyx tube.

Okame cherry blossoms

Okame trees are currently in bloom right now. It’s a rare cherry tree in Vancouver so it’s worth a visit.

Okame cherry tree

This tree is in Burnaby on Charles street (corner Fell), but there are other Okame in UBC,Kitsiliano, etc. Search the neighbourhood map to find an Okame near you.


Cherry Scouts Photos

Okame cherry trees outside UBC Asian Centre

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At UBC, there are four Okame cherry trees blooming: two outside the Asian Centre and two across the street, right outside the Parkade.

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You can recognize Okame cherry blossoms by the long reddish calyx-tube that holds the petals together.

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Because the calyx-tube is almost red, Okame are recognizable by the red “star shape” in the centre of the flowers.

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The leaves grow bronze to reddish green.

Okame are rare in Vancouver because they are prone to diseases.

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The Okame cherry petals are falling fast. You should visit this location soon.


This week is your last chance to see Okame cherry trees: most Okame cherry trees have already finished blooming, but because this Okame Cherry tree at UBC is in the shade, you’ll have one more week to enjoy it.

Learn more about Okame cherry tree in this forum post about Okame cherry tree

Want to see more pics? Here’s another Okame tree in Burnaby

All photos Jessica Tremblay


Okame cherry tree (Charles street/Fell)


This Okame cherry tree,  located on Charles Street (corner Fell) in Burnaby North, has dark pink – almost red – flowers. It would be easy to mistake it for a Whitcomb cherry tree or a plum tree.

As always, to identify a cherry tree, you have to get closer…


The main characteristics of the Okame is that the flowers have a long calyx tube.


The centre of the Okame cherry blossom is red, and red “veins” run through the petals.

The petals open wide, and far apart, all around the sepals (the “star” shape at the centre).


The red “heart” might be hard to see on young flowers that have not yet open. However, on these young blossoms, the long calyx would be a clue to identify them as Okame cherry blossoms.


The small slit at the end of each petals is clearly visible. This is a clue, along with the horizontal bars on the trunk, that these are, indeed, cherry blossoms (and not plum).


Looking at the fallen blossoms is an excellent way to learn more about cherry trees.


The Okame cherry petals are dark pink and very tiny.  The slit at the end of the petals is clearly visible against the sidewalk.


If you’ve never seen an Okame cherry tree, this location is worth a visit within the next week. There’s plenty of parking in the residential street.


Additional tips

Can’t make it to that location? No problem. Find out where you can find Okame cherries on our neighborhood map.

To identify cherry trees in your neighborhood, buy Ornamental Cherries in Vancouver (your essential guide to cherry blossom viewing in Vancouver).