Monday, November 12, 2012

Spectrum colors of 南京櫨, Chinese Tallow Tree

The foliage of 南京櫨 (Nankin-haze), Triadica Sebifera, or Chinese Tallow tree, is spectacular in autumn!   The bright green leaves turn crimson with some yellow, orange, purple, and red foliage.

Nankin-haze thrives in climates with mild winters and commonly grows all over Japan.  “It is native to eastern Asia, and is most commonly associated with China, Taiwan, and Japan.  In these regions, the waxy coating of the seeds is used for candle and soap making.” according to  Wikipedia.  It is fast-growing and hardy, disease free and drought tolerant, once established.

I like viewing Nankin-haze foliage at Daibutsu-ike Pond, Ukigumo Garden, Tobihino Field, and Ara-ike Pond, in Nara Park

大仏池/ Daibutsu-ike Pond
Great Buddha Hall of Todai-ji Temple, the largest wooden structure in the world

The red tree is Nankin-haze.  It looks simply red but when you approach, you'll see various different colors.

opposite side of the pond

浮雲園地/Ukigumo Garden

Ukigumo literally means "floating clouds".

Many massive Nankin-haze are found at this area.

Again, this is the charm of Nankin-haze, a multitude of various different colors at one tree at the same time.

This guy is quite handsome, isn’t he?


Lower foliage is turning colors.

Foliage is feast to our eyes and nuts are feast for the birds.  

Deer are always photogenic. 

飛火野/Tobihino Field
Landmark tree of Tobihino, three weeks ago

飛火野 Tobihino is the field at the foot of Mt. Kasuga spreading on the south of the approach to Kasuga Shrine. It was originally called “Tobuhino” in a tanka poems of Kokin Wakashu.  (Masashi Sada sings its right name “Tobuhino” in his music “Mahoroba”.)   Different from Ukigumo Garden, people are relatively sparse all the year round.

Another Nankin-haze in Tobihino is ablaze in the late afternoon sun.

荒池/Ara-ike Pond

Ara-ike Pond is a reservoir whose source is 率川 Isagawa River which originates on Mt. Mikasa.  The history of the pond is unclear, but one theory states that Hidenaga Toyotomi, the feudal lord of Nara, ordered construction of a pond in 1589.

East side of the pond

One part of this road is a bridge over the pond.  

West side of the pond

Many young Nankin-haze are growing out of the seeds dispersed by birds along the edge of the pond.  

The brilliance of their colors is clearly visible even at the time when it is getting dark.

Right after the sunset.

Five-story Pagoda of Kofuku-ji Temple from Ara-ike

Ara-ike Pond is one of the places I feel “autumn is best at dusk”.  I hope you could enjoy various colorful expression of Nankin-haze foliage which I'm so enchanted.

For your intersts, sorry only in Japanese.

若菜つむ 袖とぞ見ゆる 春日野の とぶひの野べの 雪のむらぎえ    紀貫之
春日野の とぶひののもり いでてみよ 今いくかありて 若菜つみてん


  1. Hello Yoko:
    The autumnal colouring which you feature in this post is indeed truly spectacular and must be a joy to experience first hand.

    We were most interested to read that the pond possibly dates from as early as 1589. It is certainly very attractive although, with the road now snaking across it, we should probably think of it as a lake.

    The deer are, of course, lovely. Such graceful animals.

  2. Hello Yoko-San, these photos are fantastic and show your beautiful Fall season so well.

  3. Dear Yoko - thank you for showing the wonderful autumn leaf foliage around Ara-ike Pond. It is lovely to be able to sit in the comfort of our own homes and enjoy autumn taking place around the globe. Some of your leaf photos are so colourful and bright almost resembling lighted lamps in the trees.

  4. Thank you for this Yoko,the foliage is spectacularly beautiful. Your photos are lovely,especially ripples on water 24 and 25. Interesting music,thanks for the link!

    Have a lovely week,

  5. Hi,Stardust
    Green Tomato

    1. 1か月余りの意識不明の重体は深刻ですね。奇跡が起こるよう祈りましょう。

      調子はいかがですか? 容態が落ち着いていたら、暖かい日に出かけてくださいね。晴れていると外の方が暖かいです。

    2. 私もそのニュースを新聞で知って、その後どうされてるのか心配しています。雑誌や写真集などで作品をよく拝見していました。


  6. All of your autumn photos are beautiful, Yoko....the first looks like a impressionist painting!

  7. 南京櫨は大好きな樹です。その魅力をあますところなく紹介していただいて嬉しいです。素敵なポストですね。それにしても、「まほろば」懐かしくて!35年以上前に買ったアルバムに収録されていました。ちょっと若年寄風のさださんが、古典的な表現でラブソングを歌っていた時代。久々に思い出しました。

  8. こんばんは。 とても美しい写真が一杯で感無量です。 地元に住んで居なければ撮れない風景ですね。 「そうだ京都に行こう」では無くて「そうだ奈良に行こう」と思いました。


  9. 飛火野を初めて聞いたとき、かわった名だなと思いましたが、今理解しました。奈良公園には、南京櫨がたくさんあるんですね。多色に紅葉したり、また、葉の形がかわいいです。

  10. Spectacular! Autumn feast in its full, Yoko.
    Thank you for a new name - Shuntaro Tanikawa. A teacher by profession, I'm a student by nature,, I love learning! Searched for him and enjoyed English translations, no other way to get acquainted with him, unfortunately. Don't you think Tanikawa might have been inspired by Marquez's novel? If you look at his age and see when "One Hundred Years of Solitude" made a hit with the public all over the globe... By the way it was he who translated "Mother Goose" into Japanese! Remember my post "Nursery rhymes"?

    1. I'm glad you got interested in Shuntaro Tanikawa. Yes, I remember your post “Nursery rhymes” and the hidden history behind some of them. Tanikawa could have inspired by Marquez's novel, the worldwide critically acclaimed one.

  11. The bright colours of your autumn are vibrant and gorgeous - and the deer add a magical touch. Just lovely!

  12. beautiful foliage. lovely deer and trees.

  13. What a beautiful country you live in.

  14. Yoko, I'm looking and looking at each shot of this Nankin-haze feast of scarlet colors. It's hard to believe the deer are so tame. That spider was willing to sit for a portrait too. The reflections in all the changing light are lovely. Enjoy your fall.

  15. What wonderful captures. The bright colors are something that we never experience here in India! The pond and the surrounding greenery is just so nice. I was so lucky to see a part of your world with you :)
    And I still continue to be amazed!
    Today is the festival of lights, Diwali here in India. The biggest Hindu festival, I wish you and your family a very Happy Diwali :)

  16. What a wonderful photo journal this is Yoko! Your first picture almost looks like a painting! I enjoy each and every one of your post! I so wish to visit Japan one day! :-)

  17. Oh Yoko, your photos literally take my breath away. My mouth is agape. This is splendor unmatched. I'd not heard of a tallow tree and right away thought of candles and then you explained why they're called by that name.

    Most of these photos could be enlarged and would make wonderful wall hangings. The beauty is incredible. And the deer add just the right touch.

    This is one of your best posts, I think, in terms of color and beauty!

  18. Yoko!
    What an amazing sequence of photos. I loved how you captured the sunlight breaking through with redish leaves... And the deers... Oh dear! That was an awesome shots.
    I see flowers in you!

  19. Cudowne drzewa z pięknie przebarwiającymi się liśćmi. Na zdjęciu pierwszym wyglądają jak kolorowe kwiaty. Sarenki temu miejscu dodają uroku. Wspaniały ciąg zdjęć. Pozdrawiam.
    Wonderful tree with beautiful leaves changing color. In the first picture look like colorful flowers. Fawns add charm to the place. Great series of photos. Yours.

  20. This one tree seems to encompass all the colors of autumn. You have captured so many moods of the tree as it transforms and the water. Sometimes clouds float lazily on the pond, sometimes the face of the pond sparkles and sometimes it is deep and mysterious. Beautiful series as always, stardust. :)

  21. Those trees are beautiful, spectacular leaf colour this time of year. Also love the deer and other scenery too, a lovely series.

  22. My very favourite picture is the first one. It is like a beautiful drawing with the silver tree stem and the graceful branches. Your Nankin-haze is a wonderful tree.

  23. Everything is so beautiful in Japan, these autumn scenes are stunning.

  24. That first photo looks like a painting by Monet!

    I've seen this tree so many times, and I've always wondered what it was. Now I know! I see the kanji for south is used in its name. Is it another 南蛮, like me? ;)

    Thanks for breathtaking photos!

    1. I think I know why your reacted to 南. 南京(Nanking) is Nanjing, a Chinese city. Nanking-haze is native to China.

    2. Aha! Thanks again, Yoko-sensei! ^^ I didn't connect the plant to the city.

  25. ¸.•°✿⊱╮
    A árvore é linda, sua folhagem e principalmente a paisagem.
    Tudo é tão lindo!!!!
    Tão harmonioso!!!
    Bom fim de semana, amiga!
    ✿ °•.¸

  26. Wonderful portraits of your autumnal trees and the tame deers, Yoko! A long and intensive workweek drew to an end yesterday :-) and today my wife and I took the train to visit some friends in northern Germany. And right now I've found some time to check the new blog posts of my friends from all over the world - a real easing compared the the work of the recent week.

  27. Hi there, your photographs are gorgeous. I'm just stopping by to say how delightful your blog is. Thanks so much for sharing. I have recently found your blog and am now following you, and will visit often. Please stop by my blog and perhaps you would like to follow me also. Have a wonderful day. Hugs, Chris

  28. Your photos are so beautiful that it is hard to have a favourite – I have many favourites! I like the photo of the Ara-Ike Pond a lot. It must be such a pleasure to take pictures in this lovely landscape.

  29. Fabulous captures my friend! Thanks a lot for showing the rich colours of Autumn in your beautiful homeland... Keep clicking.

    Anunoy Samanta

  30. My beloved friend Yoko
    A thank you very much for your heartfelt wishes and praise thy words to my woollies!
    I wish are blessed your family!
    The autumn photos from your country, are works of art, a painting!
    The deer, the colors, the serenity and the small path beside the lake, it's wonderful!
    Greetings and kisses

  31. Splendid photos! I like the one of the pair of deers grazing with the lovely red foliage in the background. You have also captured the rippling waters so beautifully.

  32. Greetings, Yoko! Thank you for your comment this morning. Hope that all goes well with you and your family. I scrolled through this post again and your beautiful pictures provided a sense of peace and calm. It is a gorgeous spot!

    May you have a wonderful week!

  33. Przecudowny ten park. U Was jeszcze tyle liści na drzewach. W Polsce już ostatnie pozostały. Moja córka narzeka, że w Tokio zimno, jakby zapomniała, jak w jej rodzimym kraju jest o tej porze roku.

  34. Hello Yoko, this place is really poetic in the fall.
    And what beautiful colors are the leaves and the water with its reflections!
    Thanks to you, we do know these places full of grace
    and beauty.


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