The Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival has been an annual fixture for Vancouver since 2006 thanks to Linda Poole. It aims to celebrate the unique seasonal blooming of the beautiful cherry groves scattered throughout Vancouver.
Originally gifts from Japanese mayors of the towns Kobe and Yokohama, Vancouver planted 500 Japanese cherry trees in Stanley Park in the early 1930s. In the 1950s many larger trees were removed from Vancouver streets and parks due to issues with their roots and canopies. Breeds like elms, maples, and chestnuts took advantage of Vancouver’s rainforest climate and grew to impressive sizes, and were removed by the city who had concerns of issues associated with power lines and the canopies. Converse to these problematic taller trees, smaller breeds like the cherry trees were warmly welcomed thanks to their flowering every spring. This switch from large to smaller trees in and about Vancouver was the precursor for the beautiful groves of Cherry Blossoms we are able to enjoy and appreciate each year.
This appreciation extends to this month where Vancouver is hosting its ninth Cherry Blossom Festival. There will be much to enjoy in the community each weekend from Petal Mat Picnics to the Haiku Invitational. Head to the Vancouver Cherry Blossom Festival’s official website to learn more at www.vcbf.ca/ and to get involved head to their donations page at www.vcbf.ca/get-involved/donate. Lastly the Vancity Buzz did a great article on the locations of some of the best cherry blossoms. Check it out here.