August 8, 2018

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu


In the intensive sunlight from the blinding midsummer sky, the graceful flowers of sacred lotus are coming into bloom magnificently above the pond surface covered with deep-green lotus leaves.

An unstained white flower of sacred lotus appears in a dignified manner from the depth of dirty mud water and, therefore, is referred to as the divine flower symbolizing the great wisdom and mercy of Buddha.

In Buddhist culture, there is a tradition that such a pure-white lotus flower blooms in Nirvana (Pure Land) and Amithaba (Amida Nyorai) is seated on it.

The blooming period of a lotus flower is about four days and its silky petals silently fall apart in the calm hot wind at last.




Sacred lotus flowers: Kencho-ji

Sacred lotus flowers: Kencho-ji


The seasons continue circling around and, once again, high summer has arrived here to present this marvelous composition of the lotus flowers and the golden floral decoration of the gate.

The strong sun is brightening up the pitch-black wooden gate on which the various gilded ornaments are finely attached.

The half-opening flowers of sacred lotus and the deep-green leaves are placidly vying with this gate in splendor and beauty.


Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flowers: Kencho-ji

Sacred lotus flowers: Kencho-ji

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flowers: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flowers: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flower: Kaizo-ji


Sacred lotus flower: Kaizo-ji

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

Sacred lotus flower: Tsurugaoka-hachimangu

July 16, 2018

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flower: Kencho-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flower: Kencho-ji


The rainy season has taken wing at last and the summer is getting closer to its height steadily.

In the dazzling sun, by gradual dehydration, Ajisai flowers are metamorphosed into their last figures and colors before fading.

Their half-dried sepals are modestly dyed in the remaining colors of rainwater.

The ever-changing splendor of these flowers permeates the depth of my mind and makes me realize the fleetingness of living things in the swiftly flowing stream of seasons.



Early-blooming lotus flower: Kencho-ji

Lotus flower: Kencho-ji


Earlier than usual, a pale-yellow flower of lotus is blooming towards the radiant sun hastily as if to welcome the premature arrival of the long-expected midsummer.


Suiren (water lily) flowers: Engaku-ji

Suiren (water lily) flowers: Engaku-ji


In the basin placed in front of the gate to the Shari-den (reliquary hall), two yellow flowers of water-lily are secretly blooming like tiny twin sisters.

They are listening closely to the silent voice of mercy pouring out from the small sacred shrine of this reliquary hall.


Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flower: Engaku-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flower: Engaku-ji


Ajisai flowers decorate themselves splendidly with magical colors at the very end of their lives.


Nemunoki (Albizia julibrissin) flowers: Engaku-ji

Nemunoki (Albizia julibrissin) flowers: Engaku-ji

Blue sky in June: Yuigahama-beach

Blue sky in June: Yuigahama-beach

Himeougisuisen (Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Himeougisuisen (Crocosmia x crocosmiiflora) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Kikyo (Platycodon grandiflorus) flowers: Kaizo-ji


Kikyo (Platycodon grandiflorus) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Yamayuri (Lilium auratum) flowers: Chojyu-ji

Yamayuri (Lilium auratum) flowers: Chojyu-ji

Nouzen-kazura (Campsis grandiflora) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Nouzenkazura (Campsis grandiflora) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Engaku-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Engaku-ji

June 20, 2018

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Chojyu-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Chojyu-ji


The summer rainy season has just set in.

Along the uphill road beside the modest temple, the ajisai flowers of various colors and shapes are finely blooming against the overcast sky.

The subtle coloring and ceaseless metamorphosis of these flowers are brought about by the abundant moisture and minerals absorbed from the rain and soil.

Under the threatening sky peculiar to this season, ajisai flowers closely wait for the rain to keep blooming exquisitely and their quiet beauty soaks into my mind deeply like a gentle merciful rain.



Gaku-ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla f. normalis) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Gaku-ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla f. normalis) flowers: Kaizo-ji


Ajisai flowers gradually change color due to the subtle chemistry of water and soil during their flowering periods.

The milky white sepals of these flowers are dyed with the various shades of ruby red.

This coloring perfectly matches the fresh green of leaves and reminds me of a classical color combination of kimono cloth.


Gaku-ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla f. normalis) flowers: Engaku-ji


Gaku-ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla f. normalis) flowers: Engaku-ji


The small ultramarine-blue flowers are blooming in the interior of the flower head.

These flowers and the flower-buds are ornamented with the frame of snowy petal-like calyxes.


Gaku-ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla f. normalis) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Gaku-ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla f. normalis) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Bamboo grove: Jochi-ji

Bamboo grove: Jochi-ji


Thanks to the favorable rainfall and temperature of this season, the bamboo grove continues growing abundantly.

The dense blades and tall stems are trembling lightly in the mild breeze, which lets me know that this bamboo grove is full of the true joy of living.


Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Kita-kamakura


Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Bamboo grove: Jyochi-ji

Bamboo grove: Jyochi-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Chojyu-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Chojyu-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Jyufuku-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla) flowers: Jyufuku-ji

Gaku-ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla f. normalis) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Gaku-ajisai (Hydrangea macrophylla f. normalis) flowers: Kita-kamakura

June 11, 2018

Suiren (water lily) flowers: Ofuna botanical garden (Kamakura)

Suiren (water lily) flowers: Ofuna botanical garden (Kamakura)


The thick foliage and the bright sunlight of early summer are calmly reflected on the slight ripples of this water-lily pond.

The graceful flowers and circular leaves are inlaid over the quiet water surface and are in harmony with the impressive atmosphere of flickering light and colors.

The gentle breezes are sweeping over the pond to transform the reflected picture of light and colors ceaselessly.

(as an homage to Claude Monet)

Hanashobu (iris) flowers: Ofuna botanical garden (Kamakura)

Hanashobu (iris) flowers: Ofuna botanical garden (Kamakura)


Basking in the bright early-summer sun, the fragile silken flowers of iris are blooming stunningly to the utmost.

The wet and warm atmosphere just before the rainy season gives birth to the precious gradations of violet colors and the exquisite figures of these flowers. Each flower blooms only for three days and becomes withered up too soon.

(From these violet iris flowers, I remember the beautiful painting titled "The Iris Garden At Giverny" by Claude Monet.)



Iwatabako (Conandron ramondioides) flowers: Tokei-ji

Iwatabako (Conandron ramondioides) flowers: Tokei-ji


In Kita-kamakura, the tiny violet flower of Iwatabako is a notable symbol of the summer rainy season.

Together with colorful hydrangea flowers, Iwatabako flowers let us know that summer has come around and the rainy days of June will begin soon again.


Hanashobu (iris) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Hanashobu  (iris) flowers: Kaizo-ji

Iwatabako (Conandron ramondioides) flowers: Tokei-ji

Iwatabako (Conandron ramondioides) flower: Tokei-ji

Suiren (water lily) flower: Kita-kamakura

Suiren (water lily) flower: Kita-kamakura


Again this year, one suiren flower quietly bloomed on the water surface in my small garden.


Hanashobu (iris) flowers: Tokei-ji

Hanashobu (iris) flowers: Tokei-ji

Kaiu (Zantedeschia) flowers: Kaizoji

Kaiu (Zantedeschia) flowers: Kaizoji

Ajisai (Hydrangea) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Ajisai (Hydrangea) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Ajisai (Hydrangea) flowers: Kencho-ji


Ajisai (Hydrangea) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Ajisai (Hydrangea) flowers: Kita-kamakura

Ajisai (Hydrangea) flowers: Kencho-ji

Ajisai (Hydrangea) flowers: Kencho-ji

May 30, 2018

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)


Led by the magic of bewitching colors and enticing scents, I absently strayed into the summer rose garden.

In the garden full of the dazzling sunlight, the countless rose flowers were blooming in radiant glory as if to compete with one another in their own beauty and aroma.

By this breathtaking beauty of full-blown rose flowers in the sun, I was reminded of the painting entitled "The Path Under The Rose Trellises, Giverny" by Claude Monet, which painting tells me about the profound respect and admiration of this artist for the exquisite impression of sunlight and the sincere beauty of plants.



Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden_Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden_Ohuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden_Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden: Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)

Rose garden_Ofuna Botanical Garden (Kamakura)