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Wednesday, March 20, 2013

Vernal Equinox Day Joy

Today, Vernal Equinox Day, is a national holiday in Japan.  As is said in Japanese saying “Neither heat or cold lasts beyond the Equinox.”, the current weather tells us spring with its full energy is just around the corner.  The start of blooming of Somei-yoshino variety of Sakura (cherry tree) was record early in Tokyo and Kyushu.  I see many Tokyo people enjoying parties under the flowers in full bloom on TV as I write this, while I saw only early blooming varieties here in Nara.


Cerasus serrulata ‘Tairyo-zakura’
大漁桜 (タイリョウザクラ)
 
鵯 (ヒヨドリ)/Brown-eared bulbul
Japanese have Equinoctical Week which includes three days before and after the Equinox Day. During the week, we customarily visit the graves of the departed loved ones and celebrate life and nature.  Knowing today’s weather of on-and-off raining, my husband and I visited our ancestors' grave in the early morning and as usual we stopped by Umami Hills Park in its vicinity on our way back. 

These are the joys I found.
 



A pond was fringed by yellow 山茱萸/Cornus officinalis and red 木瓜/Japanese quinces.
 


日向水木 (ヒョウガミズキ)/Corylopsis pauciflora
I was glad to learn the name of this cherry tree when my husband turned my attention to the name plate of the tree.


Cerasus ‘Yoko’
陽光/ヨウコウ
 
It is "Yoko"!
It is a crossbred variety of 天城吉野/Amagi-yoshino
and 寒緋桜/Cerasus campanulata (Maxim.) Masam.& S.Suzuki.
 






雪柳 (snow-willow), or Thunberg’s meadowsweet
 
花桃/Prunnus persica
 

 Prunnus persica were on the verge of blooming.
 

Our finish at the park was pancake sandwiches for brunch.
Right after we left the park, it started raining.
 
I closed "Comments" this time.  Thanks for reading.
Wish you a joyful Vernal Equinox Day!