Last month, I went mountain climbing with my classmates in the Yatsugatake area and I was amazed to see gentian flowering over the entire mountain. Unfortunately, I forgot to bring my camera which I had left in the base camp. So I drew this sketch instead.Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Gentian or rintou (in Japanese) are very popular flowers in the fall.

There are between 700 and over a thousand species (depending on which website you visit) with around 400 species from China alone (more than half of those are endemic). Some of the potted plants are sold very cheap, with the prices going higher for the deepest shades of blue like the one below…

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Yezo-rintou from northern island of Hokkaido.

But gentians can be difficult to grow because they are mountain plants and require special conditions.

I was shown this charming and unusual blue and white gentian by my florist friend.

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Below are Kirishima-rindo which I photographed at the Meisen Garden in Hakone last year.

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– October 09, 2007

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