With the start of the new year, the Japan Meteorology Corporation has already turned its attention to spring with its first official cherry blossom forecast for 2024. This initial forecast predicts that cherry blossoms will begin at the usual time in most regions of Japan, although in some places they may start a few days earlier.

Last fall's above-average warm temperatures have delayed the onset of the necessary cold period for sakura in Japan. However, this delay is expected to be offset by continued warm temperatures from January through March, which will accelerate the growth phase.

For Tokyo, cherry blossoms are predicted to begin on March 23, reaching full bloom by March 30. In Kyoto, the first flowers are also expected on March 23.

Osaka will see its first flowers on March 25, with full bloom coinciding with Kyoto on April 1.

The northern prefecture of Hokkaido will be the last to see cherry blossoms. For Sapporo, the sakura season is scheduled to begin on May 2, and full bloom will be by May 6.