May 24, 2022

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji


The magnificent flowers of peonies, which are the typical flowers that adorn the gardens with brilliant colors in the latter half of spring, are in full bloom as if to compete against each other for their grace and dignity in their realm.

The peony is a flowering tree native to China, and its noble flowers have been highly praised as the king of flowers there.

The peony is believed to have been introduced into Japan from China during the Nara period (710-794), but according to one theory, it was first brought to Japan as a medicinal plant by Kukai (Kobo Daishi), who was an Japanese envoy sent to the Tang Dynasty and later founded the esoteric Shingon school of Buddhism in Japan during the Heian period (794-1185).

Each of these flowers continues blooming for only a few days, and then their thin fragile petals, which look like luxurious silk crepes, rapidly loose their moisture and fall off one by one as if to narrate the ruin of royalty.


Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

 

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

 

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

 

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

Botan (peony) flowers: Kencho-ji

 

Kakitsubata (iris) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Kakitsubata (iris) flowers: Kaizo-ji

 

Sekkoku (Dendrobium herb) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Sekkoku (Dendrobium herb) flowers: Kaizo-ji

 

Kakitsubata (iris) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Kakitsubata (iris) flowers: Kaizo-ji

 

Kaede (maple) tree: Kaizo-ji

Kaede (maple) tree: Kaizo-ji

 

Baika-utsugi (Philadelphus satsumi) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Baika-utsugi (Philadelphus satsumi) flowers: Kaizo-ji

 

Water lily flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

Water lily flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

 

Water lily flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

Water lily flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

 

Fuji (Japanese wisteria) flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

Fuji (Japanese wisteria) flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

 

Fuji (Japanese wisteria) flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

Fuji (Japanese wisteria) flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

 

Fuji (Japanese wisteria) flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

Fuji (Japanese wisteria) flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

 

Fuji (Japanese wisteria) flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

Fuji (Japanese wisteria) flowers: Ofuna Flower Center (Kamakura)

 

May 7, 2022

Kaido (Malus halliana) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Kaido (Malus halliana) flowers: Kaizo-ji


Enticed by a flood of blazing colors in the spring sun, I wandered into the humble garden of this old temple and found the old tree of Kaido bearing countless rose-red flowers.

As if to try to inherit the principal role in spring flowers from the gradually declining flowers of Sakura, the Kaido flowers drooping from the slender twigs were in full bloom and were decorating the tranquil garden in such a way as to put rouge on its cheeks.

Kaido is a flowering tree of rose family native to China, and the Chinese people have highly praised its flowers of maidenly grace since very remote times. 

This flower is sometimes called "the broken heart flower" there, according to the ancient legend that, when a girl was forcibly separated from her lover and cried out longing for him, the beautiful rose-red flowers of Kaido appeared in the place where her tears of blood had dripped.



Kaido (Malus halliana) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Kaido (Malus halliana) flowers: Kaizo-ji


The combination of the rosy shades of the flower petals and the vivid green of the new leaves causes the exquisite elegance of these Kaido flowers in the gentle spring sun.

At the tip of the crimson floral axes extending from the slender branches, these bewitching flowers are hanging their heads low like taking a long afternoon nap.

They seem to keep sleeping gracefully like Empress Yang Kuei-Fei of the Tang dynasty who is known as the legendary lady of unmatched beauty in China. She became tipsy and felt into a doze in the peaceful palace garden before the eyes of Emperor Xuan Zong who was deeply enchanted by her.