Yoshino cherry (Prunus × yedoensis ‘Somei-yoshino’) stands out among all deciduous ornamental trees with its beautiful flowers, which blossoms before new leaves sprout in early spring. It’s sensational when clusters of cherry blossoms pop up on the branches every year, which last for about 2-3 weeks before quickly raining off to the ground.
The typical Yoshino cherry blooms in extremely pale pink and emits a slightly sweet, almond-like smell. A single tree could blossom with over a thousand flowers, and no matter you are viewing the flourishing blossoms or the falling petals, it’d impress you like a lush dream made of pinky clouds. There are also varieties with multi-layered petals among common gardening species, whose flowers are mainly in white or pink color schemes.
These small trees are mostly 6-12 meters in height. There are also compact varieties that are only 4-5 meters tall, which are perfect for small gardens and make a nice scene next to a pavilion. The trees’ round tops not only ooze with Oriental appeal but also provide shades to the gardens, which is hard to come by. In summer, the broad-spreading branches, silky bark and dark-green leaves of Yoshino cherry trees contribute a sense of tranquility to the view of the gardens, yet their flowers and fruits lure butterflies and birds respectively, adding dynamics to a serene picture.
If we must name a disadvantage of Yoshino cherry, probably only its life span is worth mentioning. As an ornamental tree, Yoshino cherry lives a relatively short life. Though there are a few ancient longevous exceptions, most Yoshino cherry trees live for only 15-20 years.