One of the last cherries to flower is bird cherry, a tree native to the UK, although not the south east of England. Despite that, it thrives in urban areas all over the country including in London where it can be seen very frequently.
Unlike the flowering cherries that make such an impression earlier in the spring bird cherry flowers in May and also unlike thos ornamental trees, it holds its flowers in spikes. These white flower spikes point in all directions, appearing to cover the canopy with hundreds of ice creams!
Bird cherries are also distinguished from other Prunus species by their smooth grey bark which does not have the horizontal slits – or lenticels – which are so conspicuous on other species in this genus.