Cherry blossom facts for kids

Kids Encyclopedia Facts
(Redirected from Sakura)
Japanese Cherry
Somei Yoshino Sakura
Scientific classification
Kingdom: Plantae
Division: Magnoliophyta
Class: Magnoliopsida
Order: Rosales
Family: Rosaceae
Subfamily: Amygdaloideae
Genus: Prunus
Species

Prunus jamasakura
Prunus serrulata
Prunus x yedoensis

Cherry blossom or sakura (Japanese kanji and Chinese character: 桜 or 櫻; katakana: サクラ) are cherry trees, Prunus serrulata, and their blossoms. The fruit comes from a different species. Cherry trees are a symbol of spring for Japanese people. The word Sakura can also be used as a name for women. The traditional custom of Hanami or Flower viewing involves visiting places where sakura are blooming. Japanese people love cherry blossoms, but they are not the national flower in Japan. Someiyoshino is the most famous type of sakura.

Classification

There are approximately 400 different types of cherry trees. They mutate easily.

Flower

Most of the flowers are white or pink with five petals, but there are some flowers with almost a hundred petals.

Related terms

  • Hanahubuki means a scene when the cherry petals are scattered like snow.
  • Cosmos flowers are called Akizakura (autumn cherry blossoms) because the flower's shape is similar to a cherry blossom.

Culinary use

Pickled blossoms
Pickled blossoms
A cup of sakurayu
A cup of sakurayu

Cherry blossoms and leaves are edible and both are used as food ingredients in Japan:

  • The blossoms are pickled in salt and umezu (ume vinegar), and used for coaxing out flavor in wagashi, (a traditional Japanese confectionery,) or anpan, (a Japanese sweet bun, most-commonly filled with red bean paste.)
  • Salt-pickled blossoms in hot water are called sakurayu, and drunk at festive events like weddings in place of green tea.
  • The leaves, mostly from the Ōshima cherry because of the softness, are also pickled in salted water and used for sakuramochi.

Since the leaves contain coumarin, which is toxic in large doses, it is not recommended to eat them in great quantities.

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Cherry blossom Facts for Kids. Kiddle Encyclopedia.