Jiji Press TOKYO (Jiji Press) — The Forestry and Forest Products Research Institute and the Wakayama prefectural government’s forestry test station have given a new species of a wild cherry tree the Japanese name Kumanozakura.
The cherry tree, growing in the southern part of the Kii Peninsula in western Japan, is the first new species of the genus Cerasus in the country in some 100 years, the two groups said Tuesday.
The petals of Kumanozakura are mainly a light shade of red, similar to those of Someiyoshino, and bloom earlier than those of the cultivated variety.
The leaves are egg-shaped and smaller than those of the Yamazakura and Kasumizakura wild cherry trees found in the region.
The two organizations classified the Kumanozakura as a new species from characteristics such as the short and hairless stem part at the root of the flower.
A paper on the findings will be included in an edition of Japanese journal Acta Phytotaxonomica et Geobotanica in late June.