Prunus 'Tai-Haku'
Common name: 
Tai-Haku Flowering Cherry
Great White Flowering Cherry
Prunus serrulata ‘Tai-Haku’
Native to (or naturalized in) Oregon: 
  • Broadleaf deciduous tree, wide spreading, to 25-35 ft [about 8-10 m] tall and 35 ft [10 m] wide. Leaves simple, alternate, brown to bronze-green when young, when mature up to 24 cm long and 10 cm wide, margin serrate and the long bristles (teeth) without glands, green; fall foliage yellow.  Flowers have a slight pink tinge in the bud, becoming pure white when completely open, large, about 6 cm across, opening in a flat-plane, 5 petals (single), one pistal (may be absent) which is longer than the longest stamens; 3-4 flowers per cluster.
  • Hardy to USDA Zone 5
  •  Tai-Haku: tai, big; haku, white, or commonly Great White Flowering Cherry
  • The story of ‘Tai-Haku’ is provided by Wybe Kuitert (1999, p. 330).  Briefly, the plant was sent to England from Japan to a Mrs. Freeman in about 1900.  However, the tree in her garden was near death in 1923 when Collingwood Ingram, an authority on Japanese flowering cherries, noticed the large size and beauty of its few flowers.  He collected a few twigs of bud wood from which thousands of trees have since been propagated and distributed world-wide.  Apparently, this selection had been lost in Japan, and Ingram reintroduced it into that country in 1932.  It was named by a Japanese nobelman and politician, and a friend of Ingram, Nobusuke Takatsukasa, when Ingram showed him the tree in the spring of 1925.  He called the tree Tai-kaku, tai (great) and haku (white), a reference to the size and color of the flower.  A more detailed story of Collingwood Ingram (aka, 'Cherry' Ingram) and Japanese flowering cherries is available in a book written by the Japanese author, Naoko Abe.  The English version has been published under different titles, including:
    • Abe, Naoko. 2019. ‘Cherry’ Ingram: The Englishman Who Saved Japan’s Blossoms. 380p., Chatto & Windus, London.
    • Abe, Naoko, 2019. The Sakura Obsession: The incredible story of the plant hunter who saved Japan’s cherry blossoms. 416p., Alfred A. Knopf,when  New York.
  • Oregon State Univ. campus: northeast corner of McAlexander Field House.
Click image to enlarge
  • plant habit, flowering

    plant habit, flowering

  • flowering branches

    flowering branches

  • flowers


  • cluster of flower and buds

    cluster of flower and buds

  • flower


  • flower


  • older flower

    older flower

  • flowers after petal fall, new leaves

    flowers after petal fall, new leaves

  • expanding leaves

    expanding leaves

  • trunk, bark

    trunk, bark