These Flowers are for You

While Japan and the National Park Service intended the cherry trees of D.C. to be a gift for Americans to enjoy, the trees are actually working hard to attract a different sort of notice. The showy blooms are actually meant to entice…insects.

Plants need pollinators to reproduce. The cherry tree’s gorgeous blooms carry the promise of sweet nectar and protein rich pollen, which attracts super-efficient pollinators like bees. Bees are terrific at moving pollen from flower to flower, moving the pollination process forward.

Bloom displays like this are wonderful for the growing number of apiaries in Washington, D.C. From the White House on Pennsylvania Avenue to the Blue Plains wastewater treatment plant along the Potomac, there are about 300 active hives registered in the city.

So, if you spot a honey bee at the Cherry Blossom Festival just think – it could be from the White House hive.