Along the shore of Karasuma Peninsula of the Lake Biwa, Shiga prefecture, lotuses are growing in colonies. From the late July to the early August, the wild lotuses flowering gregariously is an awesome view.
Looks like flower fields with Mt. Mikami in the back.
Actually aqua forest.
In the shade of the lotus leaves, I spotted out a pair of Common Moorhen (Gallinula chloropus), バン in Japanese. They rest or walk on the lotus leaves. The lake is designated as a UNESCO Ramsar Wetland and is a home to a number of birds, small creatures, and plants.
As there is a cherry blossoms festival in spring, a scarlet maple leaves festival in autumn, there is a lotus flowers festival in summer, where people have a chance to try “zo-bi-hai” (elephant-nose-toast). Sake is poured into the cup-like leaf and drunk through the hollow stem.
It is believed lotuses were introduced from India at the same time when Buddhism was imported from India via China and Korea. The lotus is one of the most important Buddhism’s symbols. The roots are in the mud, the stems rise up through muddy water, and the flowers bloom in pristine colors wafting sweet fragrance in the sunlight. This process, from the muddy darkness to the light of the sun, symbolizes a growth of spiritual consciousness, from blindness to the enlightenment.
the view of the lotuses from the Kusatsu Municipal Aquatic Plants Park “Mizu-no-mori”
Water lilies are also blooming at Mizunomori Acuatic Plants Park close to the lotus colony.
Mizunomori is an open air park with lake water in three directions. Visitors can enjoy various types of aquatic plants as well as land flowers through the seasons.
difference between lotus flowers and water lilies
In contrast to water lilies or other water plants which bloom above the water, lotuses rise high above the surface owing to the strength of their stem which is hollow to transfer air. Lotus flowers have distinctive circular seed pod in the center of the flower. Water lilies come in various colors, whereas the lotus has flowers in hues of white to deep pink.
While there are numerous ponds with lotus flowers, this is the only place where such a large colony of lotus exists "on a lake" as far as I know. The colony is expanding year by year along the shore.
|Click on the photo to enlarge.|
- To learn more about our world, click on the picture of My World on the sidebar. -