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Sakura boat * A cherry blossom is the flower of any of several trees of genus Prunus, particularly the Japanese cherry, Prunus serrulata, which is called sakura after the Japanese (桜 or 櫻; さくら). 'Hanami' is the centuries-old practice of picnicking under a blooming sakura or ume tree. The custom was originally limited to the elite of the Imperial Court, but soon spread to samurai society and, by the Edo period, to the common people as well.