The Washington PostDemocracy Dies in Darkness

Gray sky doesn’t stop spring’s advance in D.C.

A few cherry blossoms are said to be already apparent

The North Lawn fountain dyed green to celebrate St. Patrick’s Day at the White House on Friday. (Demetrius Freeman/The Washington Post)
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Friday seemed a day of environmental color in Washington, with many people wearing shamrock green while seeking signs of cherry blossom pink under skies that seemed decidedly gray.

Perhaps an odd mélange of possibly discordant hues, Friday nevertheless seemed if not to spell spring, at least to suggest it. Even with the sun all but hidden behind a curtain of cloud, the afternoon temperature reached 59 degrees.

That was two above the average high for St. Patrick’s Day. It is also the average for March 23, two full days after astronomical spring arrives here with Monday’s vernal equinox.

It seemed moist but in a spring way. As of 5 p.m. our rainfall amounted to only 0.01 inch, the minimum measurable amount.

But almost every hour suggested the imminence of rain, soft rain of the sort that deters few outdoor excursions but seems needed for floral development.

At the Tidal Basin, the National Park Service tweeted in the morning that “a few cherry trees” were indeed showing blossoms.

However, it seemed that a silent majority remained content to wait.

Meanwhile, perhaps the most vivid and springlike color of the day was the green light that bathed the White House.