September 20, 2010

A Kicho (Eurema hecabe) butterfly in Engaku-ji

A Kicho (yellow butterfly) is busily and brightly flitting around the vivid magenta flowers of Miyagino-hagi (Lespedeza thunbergii) to earnestly seek sweet floral nectar.

Flowers bloom and butterflies fly to visit flowers.

The garden of zen is the beautiful microcosm of life. In this minute cosmos, various kinds of small living things intently and cyclicly live and die according to the secret law of the universe without knowing it.

Mizuhiki (Polygonum filiforme) flowers in Engaku-ji

A Tsubame-shijimi (Everes argiades) butterfly in Engaku-ji

The flower of Miyagino-hagi (Lespedeza thunbergii) is one of the notable flowers which indicate the arrival of autumn in the gardens of Kita-kamakura.

This tiny butterfly of summer was devotedly flying around brilliant Miyagino-hagi flowers in a hurried manner as if to know its destiny.

A Fuyo (Hibiscus mutabilis) flower in Engaku-ji

Lotus leaves in Tsurugaoka-hatchimangu

I saw the scarlet leaves of Hazenoki (Rhus succedanea L.) beautifully lying on the blue-green leaf of sacred lotus.

Summer is going far away and autumn is arriving here finally.

It seemed to me that the amazing and unexpected combination of these colorful leaves finely represented the seasonal turning period from summer to autumn.

Raindrops on a lotus leaf in Tsurugaoka-hatchimangu

Murasaki-shikibu (Callicarpa japonica)fruits in Jochi-ji

Nohara-azami (Cirsium oligophyllum) flowers in Jochi-ji

A small Hojyaku (Macroglossum stellatarum) moth was hovering over the flowers of Nohara-azami buzzing its wings loudly.

Yamahagi (Lespedeza bicolor) flowers in Jochi-ji

Shirobana-sakuratade (Persicaria japonica) flowers in Tokei-ji

Tama-ajisai (Hydrangea involucrata) lowers in Tokei-ji

Shirahagi (Lespedeza japonica) flowers in Tokei-ji

September 6, 2010

Enokorogusa (Orthetrum albistylum speciosum)grass in Urigayatsu valley

The golden yellow spikes of Enokorogusa, which means dogtail-grass, are swaying to the soft breeze in the brilliant sunlight of early autumn.

Although these spikes usually herald the advent of pleasant autumn, the intense heat is still remaining behind persistently without knowing the end of late summer.

Soon the seasons turns as always and crisp autumn arrives once more at the gardens of zen to bring elegant and delicate beauties peculiar to this harvest season.

Oo-shiokaratonbo (Orthetrum albistylum speciosum)dragonfly in Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

I found an impressive male "Oo-shiokaratonbo" dragonfly fearlessly and quietly staying on the stem of a sacred lotus flower.

It seemed to me that the lapis lazuli blue of this dragonfly exceeded in beauty even the cloudless brilliant blue of the burning summer sky of that afternoon.

A Byakusin (Chinese juniper) tree in Kenchou-ji

Byakusin trees are planted as the symbol for the spiritual cultivation of Zen Buddhism in the gardens of Zen temples.

This old tree is one of the Byakusin trees which have grown up from the seeds planted when this Kencho-ji temple was founded in 1253.

The vigorous twisted trunk and the evergreen needles of this tree symbolize the principle of a zen trainee monk who persistently continues to improve themselves for achieving spiritual enlightenment.

A Bodhidharma statue in Kencho-ji

Bodhidharma is the legendary Zen master who is believed to be the founder of the Zen sect.

This statue was previously placed in front of the Zen lecture hall (Hatto) and was moved to this location.

The green bamboo grove and the clear blue sky of summer remarkably suited this radiant image of Bodhidharma.

Kicho (Eurema hecabe) butterfly in Jochi-ji

Shukaido (Hardy begonia) flowers in Jochi-ji

A Hime-akatateha (Vanessa cardui) butterfly in jochi-ji

I saw a vivid yellow butterfly absorbedly drinking the floral nectar of small violet flowers in the bright light of summer.

It will not be long before autumn arrives secretly and these lively butterflies disappear from view inconspicuously.

A cast-off skin of cicada in Jochi-ji

Sacred lotus flowers in Engaku-ji

The magnificent flowering season of sacred lotus has finally come to an end. We have to wait until next summer to enjoy the elegant flower of Buddha again.

Murasaki-shikibu (callicarpa japonica)fruits in Engaku-ji

A Fuyo (Hibiscus mutabilis) flower in Engaku-ji

Oshiroi-bana (Mirabilis jalapa) flowers in Engaku-ji

Hana-toranoo (Physostegia virginiana) flowers in Tokei-ji

Ginger flowers in Tokei-ji

Senninso (Clematis terniflora) in Tokei-ji

A stone lantern in Tokei-ji

Maple leaves in Tokei-ji

The dazzling light of summer is brilliantly illuminating the fresh leaves of maple in the shady grove of this garden.

About three months from now, these bright green leaves will change color and decorate this garden richly with their flaming autumnal colors.

Sarusuberi (Lagerstroemia indica) flowers in Tokei-ji

Tama-ajisai flowers in Tokei-ji