The sun rises behind the Jefferson Memorial as cherry blossoms hit peak bloom on April 2, 2008. (Kevin Ambrose)

The earliest peak bloom on record occurred on March 17, 2000 when conditions were unseasonably warm in the weeks prior. Could the NPS be wrong and 2012’s blossoms bud prior to its projection? Vote in our poll (allow a few seconds to load).

Jason is the Washington Post’s weather editor and Capital Weather Gang's chief meteorologist. He earned a master's degree in atmospheric science, and spent 10 years as a climate change science analyst for the U.S. government. He holds the Digital Seal of Approval from the National Weather Association.