Central Park in cherry blossom season greets you with an explosion of delicate pink and white petals and a sweet fragrance of blooming flowers. Petals flutter down, covering the ground near the trees in a layer of pink and white petals. It’s hard to resist picking up petals and feeling their softness and fragility on your fingertips. I feel a sense of gratitude for these brief moments of beauty and serenity in the midst of a busy city.
While cherry trees are located throughout the park, there’s a reason Cherry Hill, on the north side of the 72nd Street transverse, has its name. This area provides not only abundant trees in bloom but also a stunning view of The Lake and The Ramble beyond. The trees in bloom form a canopy of pink and white flowers, offering a sense of serenity and calmness amid nearby chatter of visitors taking in the beauty of the park, a peaceful mix of the human world and nature.
The cherry trees in Central Park are mainly of the Yoshino variety, which is native to Japan. They were gifted to New York City by the Japanese government in 1912 as a symbol of friendship between the two nations. Today, the cherry trees have become an iconic part of Central Park and are eagerly awaited by New Yorkers and tourists.
In addition to their beauty, cherry blossom trees also hold cultural significance. In Japan, cherry blossoms symbolize the fleeting nature of life and are associated with the Buddhist concept of impermanence. The annual cherry blossom festival in Japan, known as Hanami, is a time for celebration and reflection on the beauty and transience of life.
Here is a short poem by Matsuo Basho, a renowned Japanese haiku poet, about cherry blossoms, which have been a symbol of beauty and transience in Japanese culture for centuries:
"Amidst falling blossoms I watched the petals scatter And felt: this is my life."
About this Blog
Hi! I'm Nancy Kopans, founder of Urban Edge Forest Therapy. Join me on an adventure to discover creative ways to connect with nature in your daily life, ways that are inspired by urban surroundings that can reveal unexpected beauty, with the potential to ignite a sense of wonder.