“Cherry” and “Sakura”

What is the difference between “cherry” and “sakura”? The word “cherry” in English makes me think of fruit. Black cherries are sweet and easy to eat. Cherry pie is made with tart cherries and sugar and is delicious hot. Another popular dessert is cherry ice cream. When I heard the word “Sakura,” I used to think of trees and flowers. These days, however, I think of sweets. “Sakura mochi” is one of my favorite sweets. It is made with sticky rice, sweet beans, and a salty cherry leaf. It doesn’t taste anything like American cherry desserts. There are many other sakura-flavored sweets on sale now. My wife and daughter even found sakura-flavored rice balls on sticks (“dango”) and maple leaf-shaped cakes with bean filling (“momiji-manju”).