No matter what your favorite season is, no one can deny how beautiful Korea is in spring. Korea’s mountains, fields, and parks light up in rainbow colors as flowers begin to bloom. You can’t help but feel overjoyed by the visualization of new beginnings. Here is a little bit of information on my favorite Korean flowers that will help you enjoy spring to the fullest.
Korean flowers can be found in every season if you look hard enough. Yes, even winter is host to emerald blooms. However, no Korean flowers are as wonderful as spring blooms.
Today we will talk about some of the most popular native Korean flowers that put on a show in spring. The diversity of colors changes and fades throughout the spring months. Naural flowers begin with shades of white and pink, then yellow and orange flowers bloom, and finally fantastic shades of purple. By the end of spring, nature is filled with a stunning flower rainbow.
Plum Blossom 매화
While many believe the season of Korean flowers begins with cherry blossoms, it actually doesn’t. White plum blossoms are the very first native Korean flower to bloom in spring.
They look similar to cherry blossoms, so they are often misidentified. However, if you look closely, you will find that plum blossom petals are round and the flowers have no visible stems. On the other hand, cherry blossoms have a notch on their petals and the flowers have long stems.
The plum blossom normally blooms in early to mid-March. But, due to climate change, they began blooming in late March and April this year.
Cherry Blossom 벚꽃
Next, is the cherry blossom. Cherry blossoms are the most beloved of all the Korean flowers. They line city streets and parks all over Korea. At the beginning of spring, they cover streets with a pink and white carpets.
Cherry blossoms bloom for an extremely short period of time. Normally, you can see them for only a few days, or a single week if you are lucky. As they fall, the petals create a beautiful scene that is often referred to as flower snow.
In Korea, there are a ton of festivals set aside for enjoying cherry blossoms. I highly recommend planning a week to tour the country and enjoy festivals during cherry blossom season.
Double Cherry Blossoms 겹벚꽃
In addition to standard cherry blossoms, Korea is also home to double cherry blossoms. They are much fuller and last later into the season than standard cherry blossoms.
Normally, they begin blooming while standard cherry blossoms are at their peak, then last for a few weeks to a month depending on rainfall. You can still see them on trees even as leaves begin to form.
King Cherry Blossoms 왕벚꽃
King cherry blossoms are absolutely stunning. They are the fullest and pinkest of all cherry blossom varieties.
They are originally from the base of Jeju ilands inactive volcano, Halla mountain. And, they can only grow under certain conditions. As a result, they can only be found in a few locations around Korea and are considered an endangered plant species.
If you get the chance, I highly recommend visiting Jeju or Andong.
To read about Chungju, a city where you can see all three Korean cherry blossom varieties, Click Here.
Golden Bell 개나리
These yellow Korean flowers can be found blooming on low bushes all over Korea. This flower is commonly referred to as the spring detector. This is because it is even more widespread than the cherry blossom.
Korea’s mountains are carpeted in yellow during spring thanks to the golden bell. It is a very tolerant plant breed that is ideal in Korea’s harsh climate of extremes. In fact, it is one of the most common plants on the Korean peninsula.
You can see them at peak bloom in late March to early May.
Magnolias are the easiest Korean flowers to spot. Before you even see them you can smell them. They are one of the most fragrant Korean flowers.
The large white flowers blooming atop dark wood trees can be found all over Korea. For some reason, these Korean flowers are a favorite of universities. Nearly every university campus in Korea is home to a magnolia grove. Additionally, they are a common tree to see near graveyards and ancient tombs.
You can expect them to be in full bloom in March and April. Fascinatingly, their bloom date does not seem to have been affected much by climate change. This year all of the blossoms bloomed later than normal. However, the magnolias bloomed on their normal schedule. Normally, they are a midseason bloom but this year I spotted them even before the plum blossoms began to bloom.
Korean Azaleas bloom in stunning shades of fuchsia and magenta. Along with Golden Bells, they are one of the most common Korean flowers. These flowers grow on low bushes and can be found all over Korea’s mountains.
They are frost resistant and have the longest blooming period of all native Korean flowers. You can find them blooming from April to June. While they are in bloom, the bushes they sit on look completely dead. They are so vibrant amid the stringy twigs they sit on, that they almost look artificial.
They are one of Korea’s most unique blooms. As such, they are my favorite.
There are so many wonderful native Korean flowers. And so, it is difficult to go through them all in a single article. What Korean flowers have you seen around? Which one is your favorite? Let us know in the comments below!
Want to attend some Flower-themed festivals in Korea? Click Here to learn about the four best flower festivals in Korea.