April 11, 2023. More single white blossoms. Here are two cultivars that are often confused, and another that could cause some confusion were it more common. ‘Somei-yoshino’ is not so common in Vancouver, but it’s the most popular cherry in Japan and is the one planted at the tidal basin in Washington, DC and at the Quad at the University of Washington in Seattle. The single white flowers are not more than 3 cm across and hang on sparsely hairy stems.
Very popular in Vancouver are ‘Akebono’, with several block-long plantings forming an arch over the street. This tree is in the same species as ‘Somei-yoshino’ (Yedoensis). The flowers are slightly larger than ‘Somei-yoshino’, are more pink at peak bloom, and their stems are less hairy. Some flowers exhibit an extra small petal in the centre, which is never the case for the other two cultivars featured here.
‘Umineko’ or ‘Snow Goose’ are separately named cultivars with the same parents. We’re pretty sure no-one can tell them apart. These trees start upright; the branches eventually spread out but curve back inward at the tips. The flowers are smaller than the cherries shown above, are pure white with petals so round that they overlap to form large stars. Starting now, leaves will appear with the flowers.