It’s not just the District of Columbia that’s offering the sight of cherry trees blooming on the shores of a signature body of water — this sight is now a must-see springtime stop in downtown Columbia, where the locals can come to see the cherry trees along Lake Kittamaqundi.
Blossoms of Hope, a Howard County Tourism initiative in partnership with the Columbia Association (CA), held a tree planting ceremony on National Arbor Day on Friday, April 26, at the Kennedy Gardens on the east side of Lake Kittamaqundi in Columbia.
Three Yoshino cherries grown from the stock of the original Washington, D.C., cherry trees were planted at the ceremony. The special legacy trees were presented to the Blossoms of Hope last year in honor of the 100th anniversary of the original gift trees from Japan.
The local organization also donated 25 additional trees to the restoration effort at Kennedy Gardens, including Kwanzan cherry trees, dogwood trees and redbud trees. CA will plant these and dozens more trees, shrubs and perennials at that spot later this spring. The grove has been named and dedicated to the late former CA President Maggie Brown.
Also featured at the ceremony were selections from the Haiku for Hope art and poetry exhibit, which is currently showing at CA’s Columbia Art Center. Haiku for Hope paired 45 paintings — many of which were related to cherry trees — with poems, 14 of which have been selected by Howard County Tourism to be reproduced on banners that were shown at the gardens.