Monday, March 22, 2010

Getting Ready for Cherry Blossoms

It'll be a little while yet before Prunus species are flowering Upstate, but I keep checking the buds all the same.

Scientists and growers who work with these plants have names for each stage of flower development.

The cherry on our lab's front lawn currently has dormant buds.

Soon, they'll begin to swell as a flush of fresh, fine roots venture out into the warming soil. The roots we generally see when we dig up trees are structural and distract from the real action. The few scientists who have attempted to study roots in detail have discovered that the fine roots are incredibly dynamic, turning over many times during the year in response to environmental cues.

The buds enter the delayed dormancy period as soon as they begin to swell.

Green tip signals the end of delayed dormancy and the beginning of blooming.

Green tip transitions to pink bud as soon as the petals are visible.

This is the popcorn stage.

And the almond flower reaches full bloom!

h/t: The Almond Doctor


  1. Thanks! I just learned something. :D

  2. I can't wait for the Japanese cherries to start blooming. I think we are about a month out here in NW Indiana.

  3. super cool info. thanks for the elegant breakdown.



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