It was an unbelievably mild winter this year, with many 60 degree days in February, usually our coldest, snowiest month, and early March. It was the warmest winter on record and the springtime blooms started to come out early this year.
But then there was a sustained cold snap in mid-March, with practically the only snowfall of the winter, and freezing temperatures for a three-day period. It was feared that 90% of the nationally-renowned cherry blossoms would be suppressed this year by the quixotic winter weather, since the pink-hued blooms had already started to blossom early, shortly before the cold snap. (2015.)
Usually late March and early April is a time of riotous spring colors, allowing milling throngs of crowds on the Mall and around the Tidal Basin to enjoy the seasonal explosion of soft-hued colors. Nature is hardy, of course, and there was a blossoming forth, to a subdued degree, of the diminished colors this past weekend.
I hiked around the Tidal Basin on Saturday, enjoying the muted springtime splendor, walking six miles, 12,003 steps, according to the Fitbit in our midst. The admiring crowds were ever-present as usual and the colors, although not brilliant and bursting-forth as usual, were present in a sparser quality and worthy of their world renown. (2017.)