Spring is Coming in Japan, Where to Find the Prettiest Cherry Blossoms
Spring is Here! Look at the Cherry Buds
As I snuggle under my comforter, wallow in the warm rush of O-furo and deftly avoid cold rain drops as I walk to the station, it is hard to believe Japan will soon be alight with warmth and a blanket of pink. If you are a nature love like me, you will notice a difference in the hard brown of the Winter trees as we enter March in Japan. Could it be? Do you notice the slight haze of pinkish red as you look up through the branches against a steel gray sky? Yes, if you look closer, you might spy a little pink petal peering from behind a just-popped Wintery bud.
The first hint is in late January as the bright fucia of Plum blossoms bring striking color to parks and gardens across Japan. Next you have white plum that brings a kind of balance to the purity of the neon fucia....then as a perfect cross between the two...comes the Sakura. On an Indian Summer-like day in early March, you will notice the brown buds swell and tiny hints of baby pink begin to form a canopy of light, soft, sweet Spring for respite from the chill of Winter.
Spreading across the entire length of Japan like so many pretty voices the Cherry blossoms herald for possibility and hope. Grab a bento box lunch from one of the lunch trucks nearby, head to your closest park and join the throngs in excited converse under the every so sweet umbrella of Spring.
Here is a Cherry Blossom map that shows approximately when the blooms will be fully ready in areas across Japan. Thanks to fellow Senpai John Lawrence! http://www.tenki.jp/sakura/expectation.html
Here is a cute cartoon about how to enjoy the Hanami season (Cherry Blossom viewing is called Hanami)