Apr 7, 2022 - Things to Do

Where to find Japanese cherry blossoms in Columbus

A close-up of cherry blossoms
A cherry tree in Franklin Park blooms on Wednesday morning. Photos: Alissa Widman Neese/Axios

Eager to see picturesque cherry blossoms? No need to travel to Washington, D.C. — trees are blooming right here in Columbus.

What's happening: The pale pink blossoms surrounding Franklin Park Conservatory finally started emerging from their buds this week, a sure sign of spring.

  • Folks at the conservatory tell us peak bloom is just a few days away, so this weekend and early next week will likely be best for a stroll or photo shoot.

Why it matters: This month marks the 10th anniversary of the donation of 20 cherry trees from Japan to Columbus through Ohio State's East Asian Studies Center.

  • Known in Japan as sakura, the trees are a symbol of hope and renewal.

Flashback: The 2012 gift commemorated the 100th anniversary of the iconic 3,000 trees donated to D.C. in 1912 by Tokyo's mayor.

  • Another 40 trees were added to Franklin Park in 2018 and 42 in 2020.

The latest: Events last weekend commemorated the milestone year, and guests are encouraged to stop by Saturday for a hanami, or flower viewing.

A robin perches on a blooming cherry tree
A robin perches on a cherry tree in Franklin Park.

Zoom in: There are three main bloom areas in Franklin Park (1777 E. Broad St.) open to the public — the Broad Street front entrance and parking lot, near the Franklin Park Adventure Center surrounding a lake and near the Cascades.

  • There is also one tree inside the conservatory building, where admission is required. (10am-5pm, $15-22, kids under 2 free.)

Of note: If you're in the mood to explore, there are more cherry trees at Goodale Park, the Ohio Statehouse, the oval at Ohio State University and along the streets of German Village.

💡 Pro tip: Don't wait too long to plan a visit. The blooms typically only last a week or two.

Data: Franklin Park Conservatory; Map: Kavya Beheraj/Axios
Weeping cherry trees behind a row of daffodils
Daffodils border weeping cherry trees near Franklin Park's entrance.
A flowering cherry tree reaches into a cloudy sky
A flowering cherry tree near the Cascades reaches into a cloudy sky.
A row of cherry trees borders a lake
A portion of a row of cherry trees bordering a lake.
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