Around this time of the year, Hana-m0m0 or prunus persica also known as the Ornamental peach is seen in auspicious bonsai arrangements. More on the Ornamental Peach from the Japan Times article below…



Hana-momo (Ornamental peach)





The dolls of Emperor and Empress
In the box and closing the lid,
Oh my strange sigh!
Did the peach blossoms hear?


By Akiko Yosano (1878-1942)
in the poetry collection “Midaregami (Tangled Hair),”
translated by Sanford Goldstein and Seishi Shinoda (Charles E. Tuttle)

At this time of year, flower shops and confectioners’ counters are full of real or artificial peach blossoms, traditionally displayed with dolls for the Girls’ or Dolls’ Festival. This is because Asian people have long believed that dolls and peach trees have magical powers to ward off evil spirits and bestow long life. Originally native to China, the peach traveled east to Japan at least 2,000 years ago. It also traveled west, along the Silk Road, to Persia (hence its botanical name of Prunus persica). The festival culminates on the third day of the third month. According to the old calendar, this fell a little later in spring, when peach blossoms would have been flowering more widely. Although the forced buds currently on sale are often sorry-looking things, I have seen a dewy peach orchard in bloom on a mountainside in April, and it was a glorious sight.

The Japan Times: Feb. 28, 2002

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