Plum Flowers at Nijo-jo Castle
It’s been cold everyday. However, early Ume (梅, plum) flowers made us recognize the footsteps of spring. In fact, the the symbol of Japanese spring was plum flowers in the old days.
Introduced from China in the Nara (奈良) period, plum flower has been enchanting Japanese people. Also, it has been sung in many Tanka (短歌, Japanese poem of thirty‐one syllables) compositions.
In the Heian (平安) period, a paradigm shift occurred because of the Kentoshi (遣唐使, Japanese envoy to Tang Dynasty of China), and plum flowers were taken over by cherry blossoms to represent the spring in Japan.
Today, in Nijo-jo castle (二条城), a World Heritage site, constructed by Tokugawa Yieyasu (徳川家康) in the Edo (江戸) period, plum flowers are vividly blooming. It is very pity that many visitors leave the castle after viewing the buildings, and do not visit the Bairin (梅林, plum garden) at the south-west in the premises. Please go little further to see beautiful plum blossoms.
Kyoto Expert Certification 1st Grade
7 mins. on foot from Nijo-jo Mae, kyoto city bus
7 mins. on foot from Nijo-jo ekimae, subway Tozai line