Thursday, March 31, 2016

Ornamental Japanese Cherry Tree


Just in time for the Annual Cherry Blossom Festival in Washington D.C.

 History of the Cherry Blossom Trees and Festival

Each year, the National Cherry Blossom Festival commemorates the 1912 gift of 3,000 cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington, DC. The gift and annual celebration honor the lasting friendship between the United States and Japan and the continued close relationship between the two countries.

It took the coordination of many to ensure the arrival of the cherry trees.  A first batch of 2,000 trees arrived diseased in 1910, but did not deter the parties.  Between the governments of the two countries, coordination by Dr. Jokichi Takamine, a world-famous chemist and the founder of Sankyo Co., Ltd. (today known as Daiichi Sankyo), Dr. David Fairchild of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Eliza Scidmore, first female board member of the National Geographic Society, and First Lady Helen Herron Taft, more than 3,000 trees arrived in Washington in 1912. In a simple ceremony on March 27, 1912, First Lady Helen Herron Taft and Viscountess Chinda, wife of the Japanese ambassador, planted the first two trees from Japan on the north bank of the Tidal Basin in West Potomac Park.

Over the years, gifts have been exchanged between the two countries. In 1915, the United States Government reciprocated with a gift of flowering dogwood trees to the people of Japan. In 1981, the cycle of giving came full circle. Japanese horticulturists were given cuttings from the trees to replace some cherry trees in Japan which had been destroyed in a flood.

Today’s National Cherry Blossom Festival has grown from modest beginnings to the nation’s greatest springtime celebration. School children reenacted the initial planting and other activities, holding the first “festival” in 1927.  Civic groups helped expand the festivities in 1935. The Festival expanded to two weeks in 1994 to accommodate a diverse schedule during the blooming period. Growing again in 2012, the 100-year anniversary of the gift was marked with a five-week celebration. Today, the Festival spans four weekends and welcomes more than 1.5 million people to enjoy diverse programming and the trees. Over the years, millions have participated in the annual event that heralds spring in the nation’s capital.

Japanese Cherry Tree Facts

  • Japanese cherry trees (Prunus serrulata) belong to the rose family and are known for their masses of white and pink spring blossoms. These flowering ornamental trees grow best in U.S. Department of Agriculture plant hardiness zones 5 through 8. The floral display of Japanese cherry trees nearly overwhelms the yard.  
  • Many Japanese cherry trees reach 25 feet tall, while others grow to 50 feet tall with a canopy spreading up to 40 feet wide. In their native habitat, these trees can reach 75 feet tall with the right care. 
  • The trees grow well in cityscapes, planted along sidewalks or as a patio shade tree. These trees are commonly planted in Japanese tea gardens or Asian-style landscapes. The small cherries on the fruiting varieties act as a food source for small birds and mammals. Plant these trees as a focal point in the middle of a yard or in a location where the tree overhangs a water garden. 

The Ornamental Japanese Cherry Tree will correctly change with the seasons and drop leaves in the fall.  The changing-of-leaves only works if the Seasons EP is installed. It can also be used without the Seasons EP, but only the summer state will appear.

This tree is based on my own template which has 2 subsets,  4 seasonal changes, and leaves that drop in the fall. 
Faces - 2465
Appears in the Catalog under Gardening/Trees for 450 Simoleons.

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I had a request for a pink recolor of the cherry tree.  I made 2...a light pink and a deep pink.

You can find them HERE 


  1. Awesome! Thanks Ray. Your trees are pretty much the only trees I use these days. :)

    1. Thanks Maria. It seems I'm getting to be known as the "Plant Man". :)

  2. Having seasons in my Sims game without seasonal plants just makes my heart sad. One of my favorite trees are cherry blossoms and now my sims can enjoy them also. Thank you!

  3. It is a beautiful tree, thank you!!

  4. This is so beautiful! Thanks for sharing it!

  5. Thanks everyone! I'm glad you like the Cherry Blossom Tree. I have several more trees I plan on sharing...soon.

  6. Thank you, Ray, for another gorgeous tree for our Sims!

  7. Wow, it's lovely! Thank you so much! I love that you are making seasonal trees, flowers, and plants. Do you think you can make a cherry tree with dark wood, and pink Spring flower blossoms, please? :)

    1. The trunk of the tree isn't recolorable so I can't make a dark wood recolor of it, but I can make recolors of the spring blossoms in pink.

    2. Thank you! That's too bad the trunk can't be recolored, but I think the blossoms are the most important part. Pink sakura will be gorgeous~ :D

  8. Gotta love new trees! Thank you, Katherine

  9. Just went on a very serious download shopping spree lol..and wanted to thank you on the last download..awesome job Ray..

    On a serious note did you know that Nonni from Affinity Sims died Wednesday..a very sad day in the Simming World..and we will miss her very much..prayers go out to family and friend in Real Life as well is in the Simming World..