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Super post, Amy - I really enjoyed this. I never seem to manage to get to Japan in springtime, though I'm well experienced at all the other seasons now. I will have to live vicariously through these photos :)


pretty pretty pretty!


Very pretty--and some of the nicest shots were of the closed flowers. I can see why your photos are being used on Wikipedia.

I still don't like Creeping Charlie, though...


Thank you for sharing these beautiful flowers. The fringed iris is my favorite!

DJ Los Angeles

At first glance it looked like a こごみ, but after consulting the books it seems that こごみ are green when they're young, so it remains a mystery...

DJ Los Angeles

... referring to pictures 9-10.


Hayley, I love spring in Japan but a lot of the good stuff is easy to overlook. Especially in the city during cherry blossom time: the flowers themselves are nice but otherwise there's nothing much else going on: it's still cold, the trees don't have their leaves yet, and other flowers are few and far between. I do hope you can swing a springtime visit sometime though.

Thanks Illahee!

Aspasia, if I had an actual garden I might think differently, but as it is I'm free to love the weeds!

Thank you Jocelyn!

DJ Lost Angeles, thanks for trying. I may have better luck identifying them by the adult leaves, so I'll just have to go back and find them again.


Hi, I stumbled upon your lovely blog through eGullet and have enjoyed your wonderful posts. I used to live in Japan as a child, so this all brings back lots of memories. By sheer coincidence, last night I was reading the book "Oriental Vegetables" by Joy Larkcom (an excellent book for veggie growers) and there was an entry on Orychophragus violaceus (Murasaki hana na) which identifies it as an edible vegetable originally from China, where it is known as February Orchid/Chinese violet cress.

To quote: "It grows wild in China and is also cultivated as a fodder crop. In the West it has in the past been cultivated both in flower borders and cool greenhouses...It is also found growing wild in Japan;it is reported to have been introduced from China as an ornamental several centuries ago, but subsequently spread into the countryside."

Apparently it is an excellent salad plant and can also be steamed. Sorry if this is a somewhat long post, but I figured that if you love plants, as you seem to, you might be interested in this additional information!


How breath-taking are they!
Thanks for great pictures.

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