PADUCAH — Spring has sprung, but Henry Barbour says the dogwoods are behind schedule. “It was a wonderful year for flowers this year. You just have to be patient,” Barbour says.

He’s a retired forester, but now he works with the city of Paducah on the Civic Beautification Board. He helps predict when the dogwood trees will bloom.

The white flowers we are seeing in our area are either saucer or star magnolias or Bradford pear trees. “Another week for the dogwoods to open their flowers,” Barbour says. “The bud scales have just cracked open, and you can peak at what will be the flower inside.”

He’s been doing this for the past 13 years. “What I do is watch the sequence of flowering on other flowering trees. The first tree to flower in Paducah is the star magnolia. There’s some beautiful ones of those,” he says. “Then, it is followed by the tulip tree, which is the saucer magnolia. Following that comes out the Bradford pear.”

Barbour says a few days after that, the dogwoods should bloom if the weather is warm. The dogwoods prefer 60-degree weather.

“This is an example about how well decked out in blossoms they will be in about a week to 10 days,” he says. They don’t look like much now, but you just wait. “Should make it beautiful this spring,” he says. “There is just a lot of flower buds on the dogwoods.”

Barber predicts in about a week they will take your breath away.

The Dogwood Trail Celebration starts Sunday, April 1, but Barbour says the dogwoods may not be in bloom by then. He says to give it about another week.

You can follow the Dogwood Trail signs around Paducah and see the gorgeous white flowers for yourself. Barbour said you only have about two weeks to see the dogwoods at their peak before the leaves of the tree will cover most of the flowers.

Check out some of the events happening for the Dogwood Trail Celebration here.

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