Spring blossoming earlier than usual this year
Magnolia and cherry blossoms have begun to bloom in city parks, heralding the arrival of spring, local greenery authorities said on Friday.
At Shanghai Botanical Garden in Xuhui District, a magnolia tree is blooming earlier in the season than it has in 40 years and about a week earlier than last year.
"The warm and humid weather since late January has contributed to the early blossoming," said Wang Yuqin, a botanist at the garden.
If such weather conditions continue next week, most magnolias will flower. If the weather cools off, however, most will blossom in late February and early March like usual, Wang said.
At Shanghai Binjiang Forest Park in the Pudong New Area, two magnolia trees have also bloomed. The park has about 400 magnolia trees in its new magnolia garden.
Magnolia is the city flower of Shanghai.
A few kawazu-zakura cherry blossoms, traditionally one of the earliest to bloom and the most common variety of cherry blossoms in Shanghai, have flowered at Chenshan Botanical Garden in Songjiang District.
The kawazu-zakura blossom features large, bright pink petals, and the best viewing time should be in late February, according to garden officials.
Unlike other cherry blossoms in bloom for only a few days, the kawazu-zakura can stay that way for a month.
Lichun, or spring begins, commenced on Wednesday.