September 23, 2009
Under the bright sky of early autumn, these red "Higan-bana" flowers seemed to be the frozen incarnation of fiery fire.
September 20, 2009
September 15, 2009
"Higan-bana" means a flower which blooms in the equinoctial week ("Higan" in Japanese) of autumn. In this Higan week, Japanese people customarily visit the graves of their ancestors in temples to conduct Buddhist memorial services. This plant is also called "Manjyu shage," which originates from Buddhist doctrine and means "a flower of heaven."
A Higan-bana flower is the typical and characteristic flower of autumn in the Zen gardens of Kita-kamakura and its vivid and graceful appearance declares the definite beginning of autumn.
September 9, 2009
In the quiet garden of Jyouchi-ji temple, I saw a bunch of full-blown "Hana-tora-no-o " (tiger-tail flowers) shining lively under the clear afternoon sunlight. The miniature five-storied pagoda of this garden added elegant beauty to this quiet and brilliant scene.
September 6, 2009
This pollen-covered bee was ecstatically moving around to collect the nectar of the Fuyo (Hibiscus mutabilis) flower as if she were intoxicated with the aroma of its sweet nectar. Although autumn has just come, insects begin to prepare for long and harsh wintertime.
September 4, 2009
Although the flowering season of bell-flowers is almost over, I found one white bell-flower remaining in the garden of Toukei-ji temple. This small white flower seemed to silently regret the demise of brillant sunlight of summertime.
Because autumn is coming in Kamakura, this beautiful late-blooming flower of Buddha seemed to be a wonderful and surprising gift given upon departure of summer. I encountered this flower in the garden of Ryu-in-an (which means "the hut where a dragon hides") of Engaku-ji.