Trees That Look Like Cherry Blossom: Explore The Differences

I won’t be so surprised if all you understand by Japan is cherry blossom.

Yes! Cherry blossom is such an iconic flower of our country that it wouldn’t be an exaggeration to say that they are kinda national obsession.

So, we Japanese can hardly make a mistake identifying cherry blossoms (known as Sakura in Japanese), but what about the foreigners?

It’s not like only we are crazy about these blooms. They are renowned worldwide for their radiant, ephemeral, and delicate beauty.

As there are some other flowers that look like cherry blossoms, you might get confused recognizing them.

Today I will introduce you to those flowers or trees so that you don’t get puzzled.

Well, though I am pretty sure that you have seen cherry blossom at least in the picture, I would like to give a short brief about it at first.

What Do Cherry Blossom Trees Look Like?

A medium-sized flowering spectacle that reaches up to 40 to 50 feet!

This is the cherry blossom tree for you, which belongs to Prunus subg. Genus.

It is native to Japan, and in spring, these trees are flooded with light pink to ivory blossoms, creating a breathtaking beauty.

blooming cherry blossom

Regarding the number of petals, single flowers have 5 petals, semi-double ones have 6 to10 petals, and double blossoms can have 10 petals or even more.

Cherry blossoms are enriched with anti-oxidant and soothing properties that cleanse and repair the skin’s natural obstacles to promote soft, smooth skin.

cherry blossom

Now that you have seen and known about them, let’s go for further discussion on our today’s topic.

Trees or Flowers Similar to Cherry Blossoms

Check out these stunning flowers that share almost the same look as cherry blossoms. Who knows, you might end up falling in love with their fascinating beauty as well.

1. Magnolias

25 to 30 feet tall, charming trees of magnolias are native to forest areas in Japan, which is admired for its late winter to early spring blossoms.

Magnolias that bloom in early spring appear along with the cherry blossoms, and as most flowers are white or pink, people sometimes mistake them for cherry blossoms.

magnolia blossom

However, when you will take a closer look, you can easily understand the differences.

Regarding the magnolia tree vs cherry blossom, I will say the flowers of magnolia are much bigger than cherry blossoms. It is about four to five inches in diameter, whereas cherry blossoms are only around one to two inches.

magnolia tree blossom

Besides, the fleshy petals of magnolia are quite distinct from the delicate petal of cherry blossoms.

One more distinguishing clue that I can mention is that cherry bark has horizontal cracks, unlike magnolia bark, which has vertical splits.

Prunus that contains cherries is a large genus, and many other well-known stone fruits, such as peaches, apricots, almonds, and plums are also included in this genus.

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You can easily mistake them for cherry blossoms.

Let’s know about them in detail.

2. Peach

The flowers in peach trees typically start blooming from late March to mid-April in Japan.

The blossoms can be pink, white, or red in color. Even different colored flowers might sometimes appear on the same tree.

peach blossom in two different colors

To differentiate peach blossoms from cherry blossoms, you can look at the shape of the petals and observe how the flowers are attached to the branches.

The petals of peach blossoms are pointy, while the tips of cherry blossom petals have a notch in the middle.

peach blossom

Besides this, peach blossoms have shorter stems with two flowers sprouting from the same branch, but you can see multiple flowers in one place in cherry trees.

3. Plum

Japanese plum trees bloom earliest among the cherry, peach, and plum trees. You can even see these flowers from as early as January to around March, depending on the place you are in.

plum blossom

Unlike the cherry blossoms, they have rounded petals and don’t have any flower stems. They bloom directly off the branch, which means you will see one flower in one place.

plum blossom (one flower in one place)

The smell is also different for the two. Plum blossoms have a sweet, gentle scent similar to jasmine.

4. Crabapples

Crabapple trees bloom along with the later cherry species, and their blossoms are also very similar to cherry blossoms.

However, one easy way to separate them from each other is to look at the bark. Crabapples have pale bark with vertical fissures.

crabapple bloom

And if you have a botanist’s eye, you can find out another point for crabapple vs cherry tree.

There are differences in their flowers’ female parts. Cherry blossoms have a single style, while crabapple flowers have five.

crabapple blooms

Now, I will talk about apple blossoms.

Well, many people think that crabapples and apples are the same, but what separates crabapples from ordinary apples is the size of their fruit.

Crabapples are 2 inches or less in diameter, while apples usually are more than 2 inches.

Now that you know the differences, let’s get to the point.

5. Apple

While talking about apple blossom vs cherry blossom, you might say that cherries produce cherries and apples produce apples.

However, of course, it is, but that does not help much when you look at their flowers in spring!

Their flowers look almost similar, but the apple has larger and more robust flowers, whereas the cherry’s ones are smaller and delicate.

apple blossom

To find out the real difference, you need to pick a flower and look at the female parts in the flower center.

Cherry blossoms have one female part, the carpel, with one thick stem-like style. On the other hand, apples have multiple styles.

If you want to have an even more precise idea, you can cut the flower in half and explore the position of the base of the pistil.

apple blossom

If it is located under the base of the flower (inferior), it is apple, and if it is right at the base of the flower (superior), they are cherries.

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6. Almond

The almond is a deciduous tree that grows up to 20 to 30 feet. Almond blossoms are available in early spring, which is also the blossom period of the cherry tree.

And that’s why you can mistake these white flowering trees for cherry blossoms. Flowers may sometimes turn into pale pink with a faded magenta center.

almond blossom

Almond blossoms are generally used as an ornamental trees for their aesthetic appeal or grown for honey production.

Anyway, for almond blossom vs cherry blossom, I will say that you have to pay attention to how the flowers are attached to the branches.

almond blossom

The flowers of almonds are stalkless. They are not raised on a stalk like cherry blossoms. Instead, they are attached directly by the base.

Apart from this, almond blossoms have a robust sweet aroma that will remind you of jasmine and lily.

7. Apricot

As I have said earlier, apricot blossoms are botanically a part of the Prunus genus. These ornamental deciduous trees brighten up any winter landscape when very few other trees are in bloom.

Apricot blossoms may also be available in early spring, along with cherry blossoms. In fact, it is a white tree that looks like cherry blossoms.

apricot blossom

Its blossoms have a similar appearance and habit to some smaller flowering cherries.

Apricot blossoms are usually a bit smaller than cherry blossoms. They consist of five broad, flat, and oval-shaped curved petals. The petals primarily remain white, but later they are sometimes dyed with light pink to red tones.

apricot blossom

Apricot blossom spreads a soft aroma with a mildly sweet, floral, and fruity flavor.

Now, I will talk about some such trees that have different blossoms from a cherry tree, but if you look at those trees in full bloom from a distance, they all will look exactly like cherry blossoms.

8. Eastern Redbud

Eastern redbuds or Cercis canadensis are most commonly used for ornamental purposes, which can grow up to 30 feet. They are native to eastern North America.

This tree looks somewhat exceptional as it has multiple trunks with horizontally layered branches.

In early spring, before green foliage appears, the tree gets covered with masses of rosy-pink blooms, creating an eye-catching panorama.

eastern redbud tree

Like the cherry blossoms, the eastern redbud is tolerable to a variety of soils. Though they can develop very well under full sun or partial shade, they can not tolerate full shade.

Besides, you should water the plants weekly after planting them on well-drained soil.

spring blossom of eastern redbud

This tree doesn’t end its duty just after increasing the aesthetics. It has enough medicinal value as well. You can use their roots or inner barks to treat whooping coughs.

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9. Pink Trumpet Tree

The pink trumpet tree is a medium-sized deciduous tree with an open branching pattern and rounded canopy shape. It is generally 30 to 50 feet tall and 30 to 40 feet wide.

This tree is native to Central and South America, from Mexico to Argentina, and provides one of the most stunning flowering displays in late winter to early spring.

pink trumpet tree blossom

You will find no leaves at this period. Instead, the tree is flooded with large round clusters of bright pink to magenta tubular flowers.

pink trumpet flowers in clusters

Like cherry blossoms, rosy trumpets grow well in well-drained sandy, loamy, or clayey soil.

However, talking about the dissimilarity, it cannot grow in the shade like cherry blossom. It must need the sun to grow and develop.

Besides creating breathtaking vistas, these pink trumpets work well against anemia, constipation, fevers, and pain

10. Empress Tree

The empress tree or Paulownia tomentosa is mainly grown for its ornamental purposes. This fast-growing deciduous tree can grow up to 30 to 40 feet.

empress tree flowers

This tree is native to China. They are famous for their aromatic spring blooms of foxglove-like flowers and heart-shaped foliage.

Its funnel-shaped flowers are pinkish-lavender in color, with dark purple spots and creamy yellow stripes in the interior.

close up of empress tree blooms

Like cherry blossom trees, this tree can also adapt to most soil types.

Though empress tree can withstand cold temperature, it needs at least 6 hours of full sun and moderate water to grow and develop.

11. Silk Floss Tree

Silk Floss Tree or Ceiba speciosa is also an ornamental tree that is considered one of the most beautiful trees in the world.

silk floss tree

It is native to South America, and this tree can rise up to 50 feet, almost similar to cherry blossoms. .

When it is in full bloom, numerous large, flimsy pink flowers with white centers blanket the whole tree, creating an ethereal beauty.

silk floss tree blooms

Silk floss tree is adaptable to most well-drained soils like cherry blossoms.

It prefers more sun, requiring 6 to 8 hours of sun daily. They are drought-tolerant, and that’s why only occasional watering is needed for them to survive.

The cotton fibers from this tree are used to stuff the insides of pillows and cold-weather clothing.

Well, these are the plants that are cherry blossoms look alike. If you are already impressed by their stunning beauty, you can assume them as an alternative to cherry blossoms.

Let’s conclude it here.


I hope you enjoyed this write-up on the tree that looks like cherry blossoms. I explained all the flowers similar to cherry blossoms and also let you know how to distinguish them from each other.

So, it will help you get rid of all your confusion.

Thank you.

Frequently Asked Question:

Actually, there is no difference between a Sakura tree and a cherry blossom tree. The cherry blossom tree is known as Sakura in Japanese.
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