Morris Arboretum Celebrates Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival
This spring, the Morris Arboretum will once again host its annual Japanese Cherry Blossom Celebration, in partnership with the Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival of Greater Philadelphia. The Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival is an initiative of the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia with the goal of fostering a better understanding of the cultural, social and educational customs of Japan in the United States.
In the early 20th century, John and Lydia Morris (founders of the Morris Arboretum) established one of the finest collections of Japanese plants and gardens in the region at their home, Compton, which would later become the Morris Arboretum. To commemorate this heritage, the Morris Arboretum celebrates the Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival on Saturday, April 7 and Saturday, April 14, 10am–3pm with a variety of activities. The events are for both children and adults, and will celebrate the art, culture and gardens inspired by the more than 35 varieties of cherry trees that grace the Arboretum with their blossoms each spring.
Cherries should be at their peak this year during the Festival. Although hard to define, the peak is usually based on when 70% of the Yoshino cherry(Prunus × yedoensis) blossoms are open. Two groups in Washington, DC study the weather extensively to predict the peak bloom time including, The National Park Service, (www.nps.gov) and the National Cherry Blossom Festival (www.nationalcherryblossomfestival.org). Philadelphia Yoshino cherries flower about one week after those in Washington, DC, so expect peak time to be somewhere around April 3-7. Of course, Morris Arboretum has more than just Yoshino cherries, so there is always more to see.
Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival events:
Saturday, April 14, 10am-3pm
All events included with garden admission.
10:15am and 12:15pm, meet at Garden Rail entrance
Visitors are invited to discover and appreciate the variety of cherry species planted throughout the Arboretum. This 45 minute walk will be led by an Arboretum expert. Space is limited.
Kyo Daiko Drumming Crew
10:30am and 12pm, Haha Wall
Taiko drumming has been practiced in Japan for hundreds of years at festivals, battles, and as a means of communication over long distances. A combination of choreography and drumming, taiko drumming is physically demanding and visually compelling. KyoDaiko, under the sponsorship of the Japan America Society of Greater Philadelphia, is a community-based taiko drumming group offering classes in the Wynnefield section of Philadelphia.
Kimono Dressing Demonstration
11am, Upper Gallery
Young and old alike will delight in the beautiful kimonos exhibited by Fumiyo Batta. As a “Cultural Ambassador” for the Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival, Mrs. Batta has given numerous classes and demonstrations, including seminars on the art of kimono, traditional Japanese attire, since the festival’s inception in 1998, and has been considered a significant Japanese cultural asset to the Delaware county area for the past two decades. As an extensive collector of kimonos, she will talk about the history of the kimono and demonstrate how to wear them. Participation from the audience will be welcomed.
1 and 2pm, Upper Gallery
Learn this art form of paper folding that has been practiced for centuries and become a lasting symbol
of traditional Japanese culture.
Japanese Garden Elements Tours
2-3pm, meet at Garden Railway entrance
Led by an Arboretum guide, this tour will highlight the Arboretum’s Japanese-style gardens.
For more information about any of these events, please call 215-247-5777 or visit Morris Arboretum online atwww.morrisarboretum.org. And during your visit, be sure to stop at The Shop at Morris Arboretum for unique Arboretum-branded merchandise. The Shop specializes in, environmentally-friendly reuse of materials, and items inspired by nature. Gifts for children to engage and inspire young minds await you. And for the person on your list who has everything, give the gift of a Morris Arboretum membership, the gift that lasts all year long.
The Morris Arboretum of the University of Pennsylvania is located at 100 East Northwestern Avenue in the Chestnut Hill section of Philadelphia. The 92-acre horticulture display garden features a spectacular collection of mature trees in a beautiful and colorful landscape. The Arboretum includes numerous picturesque spots such as a formal rose garden, historic water features, a swan pond, and the only remaining freestanding fernery in North America. The arboretum is listed on the National Register of Historic Places and is also the official arboretum of Pennsylvania. A permanent nationally award winning exhibit, Out on a Limb – a Tree Adventure Exhibit adds to Morris Arboretum’s allure by transporting visitors 50 feet up into the treetops on a canopy walk that requires no climbing. Open weekdays 10am-4pm and weekends 10am-5pm (Apr-Oct). Open late on Wednesdays in June, July, and August until 8:00pm, except July 4. For more information, visit www.morrisarboretum.org.
Photo Credit: Paul Meyer
Photo Caption: On Saturday, April 7 and Saturday, April 14, 10am–3pm, the Morris Arboretum will once again host its annual Japanese Cherry Blossom Celebration, in partnership with the Subaru Cherry Blossom Festival of Greater Philadelphia. In the early 20th century, John and Lydia Morris (founders of the Morris Arboretum) established one of the finest collections of Japanese plants and gardens in the region at their home, Compton, which would later become the Morris Arboretum. To commemorate this heritage, the Arboretum celebrates the Japanese Cherry Blossom Festival with a variety of activities, including a traditional Japanese tea demonstration, pictured here. The events are for both children and adults, and will honor the art, culture and gardens inspired by the more than 35 varieties of cherry trees that grace the Arboretum with their blossoms each spring. For more information about any of these events, please call 215-247-5777 or visit Morris Arboretum online at www.morrisarboretum.org.