Cherry blossoms are in peak bloom in WA. Here are 8 places in Tacoma you can find them

The cherry blossom is a tree synonymous with Japanese culture and springtime, but the vibrant pink bloom has planted its roots in Washington state for over a century.

Cherry blossoms first landed on American soil in 1912 as a gift from the people of Japan to the United States, according to Metro Parks Tacoma. Although the trees were intended to be primarily planted in Washington, D.C., they arrived from Japan in Seattle, and Puget Sound quickly adopted the cherry blossom as their own.

But the window to see the trees in full bloom is brief. Cherry blossoms typically reveal their vibrant pink hue in March and only last a few weeks before fading away. Due to colder-than-average temperatures, the peak bloom is expected in early April this year, according to the University of Washington.

The Quad at the University of Washington is one of the Evergreen State’s most famous spots for viewing cherry blossoms. The university has a dedicated Twitter account documenting its cherry blossom season and a live cam view of its campus trees.

But for Tacoma residents who don’t want to drive to Seattle, there are plenty of locations in Pierce County to enjoy cherry blossom blooms. The following map shows eight locations near downtown Tacoma where you can spot the bright pink plant:

Know of other places around Pierce County to view cherry blossoms? Email and we’ll add it to our list.

Point Defiance Park - 5400 N. Pearl St., Tacoma

The Japanese Garden in Point Defiance was first established in 1965. The garden is located just north of the park’s visitor center and pagoda, making the view of cherry blossoms accessible to everyone without having to travel too deep into the park peninsula.

Wright Park - 501 S. I St., Tacoma

Japanese flowering cherries were first introduced at Wright Park in 1936, according to Metro Parks. This park in Tacoma’s Stadium District consists of 27 acres and over 600 trees.

Wapato Hills Park - 6231 S. Wapato St., Tacoma

Many cherry blossom trees can be viewed at Wapato Hills Park. You can get a nice view of the plants near the park’s Skip and Laura Vaughn Playfield.

Chambers Creek Regional Park - 6320 Grandview Dr. W., University Place

A row of sakura trees lines a paved path that leads to a labyrinth on the park’s western edge. Chambers Creek consists of 930 acres on the shore of Puget Sound.

Lakewold Gardens - 12317 Gravelly Lake Dr. SW, Lakewood

This area in Lakewood was transformed into a horticulture center in the early 1900s. Today, visitors can stop by the center for group tours, Friday drop-in hours or other special events.

North Proctor Street - 6th Avenue to 21st Street along Proctor Street, Tacoma

If you want to catch glimpses of cherry blossom trees without traveling too far out of the heart of Tacoma, consider taking a stroll through the city’s north end near the University of Puget Sound.

Tacoma Chinese Reconciliation Park - 1741 N. Schuster Parkway, Tacoma

The Chinese Reconciliation Park was created to celebrate Tacoma’s “cultural diversity and common humanity,” the park’s website states. It is located north of Ruston Way and Old Town and contains trails, pathways, and interpretive signage.

McKinley Avenue - 38th to 48th Streets along McKinley Avenue, Tacoma

The McKinley neighborhood and McKinley Park are just south of the Tacoma Dome and Interstate 5. Just south of the park, visitors can walk south along McKinley Avenue for about three-quarters of a mile between 38th and 48th Streets to enjoy cherry blossoms lining the road.