Today, as I was going shopping, I happened upon a pleasant surprise. It was Kawazuzakura, or Kawazu cherry trees. This variety is from the Izu Peninsula of Shizuoka, and is a bright pink. It blooms from late February to mid-March. Very nice surprise, don’t you think?
Near the beach in Fujisawa is a very large park called Tsujido Kaihin Koen (or Tsujido Seaside Park). It’s used for many things, including sports, festivals, relaxing, and there’s even a small amusement park. These pictures mostly show the trees of the park, including a pond area. Enjoy!
Palm trees are everywhere in this park. It seems so tropical.
Parks in Japan typically include a pond.
The Japanese black pine is a popular tree for bonsai, but you can find them everywhere along the coast in Japan.
This grove of Japanese black pines shows how twisted their trunks are.
The trees tend to bend in one direction, the way the wind blows.
The pond contains numerous turtles, including this one.
Looking back toward the pond through some Japanese black pine trees.
This is only a small area of the park, and I have taken pictures of elsewhere before. I will post them in the future.
After leaving the park, we went down to the beach. My next set of photos will be of the beach! There were some great waves.
Here’s a view of the park from above. We were in the central part.
The Japanese black pine tree is one of the most recognizable trees from Japan. It’s famous, in fact. It’s one of the primary trees used in bonsai. This tree is also the official city tree of Fujisawa, which is where I live. You can see them everywhere along the coast. They’re very tough trees, and they can withstand the strong winds and blowing sands that come off the beach. They’re excellent at blocking sand from reaching further inland, as well. These trees can grow quite tall, but they’re also commonly seen as small trees. In Tsujido Kaihin Park, there are plenty of Japanese black pines. You’ll know them when you see them, as they don’t exactly grow straight up. This picture shows the trunks of a grove of Japanese black pine trees.
The trees tend to bend away from the beach, which is the direction the wind comes from.
Japan is very well known for its colourful foliage in autumn. Although places like Canada have already changed colour, here in the Kanto area of Japan, we still have mostly green trees. In fact, most trees will stay green until sometime in November. Japanese maple trees are famous for their bright yellow, orange, and red leaves, but that’s not until December. But now, the ginkgo trees are slowly changing to a light green, while the cherry trees are showing some red leaves. This is a picture of Kirihara Park with its many cherry trees beginning to change colour.
These cherry trees are showing new colour.
Sometimes, spring seems to sneak up on you. Or at least some aspects of spring. In Japan, the plum trees start blooming. It gives me a sense that spring is coming eventually. Japanese plums (ume) are actually different than North American plums. They’re not quite the same species, or even the same genus. The blossoms are a bright pink, and last through February. Cherry blossoms come mostly in March, but some varieties come in February or even May. I took these pictures on Sunday in Engyo koen (park) in Shonandai.
Around where I work, there are many ginkgo trees. They have distinctive fan-shaped leaves and a small fruit. The ginkgo nut is an expensive food to buy, but every autumn, after they fall to the ground, many people will gather them. They’re free ginkgo nuts! Unfortunately, whenever they fall on a sidewalk or street, many will be stepped on or driven on. Ginkgo nuts stink. They smell bad. But people seem to like eating them. This photo was taken today, showing the various autumn colours. Some trees are still green, but most have become yellow. All three of these trees are ginkgo trees.
This post has been added to a great new photo meme called “Show Me Japan,” hosted by the Japan blog Budget Trouble. Check it out!