09 November, 2008

Kiku Matsuri - Chrysanthemum Festival / Yushima Tenjin

Kiku Matsuri (Chrysanthemum Festival) has been held in the shrine yard of Yushima Tenjin.
Now is the Shichi-Go-San season. There were some Kimono girls in the shrine yard. (Explanation of the Shichi-Go-San is Here)

There were various kinds of chrysanthemum everywhere.

Let me introduce the type of the chrysanthemum.

Atsu-zaki (Thick flowering)

The most orthodox chrysanthemum. Making three flowers from one stalk is very popular.
Atsu-bashiri (Thick and running(?) flowering)

Adding dynamic taste on Atsu-zaki.
Kuda-zaki (Tubal flowering)

These flowers are consisted with tubular petals. The sensitive curl of petal ends is the charm point of Kuda-zaki....the signboard said so.
Edo-Giku (Edo chrysanthemum)

The old type of chrysanthemum established in Edo-era. Actually, I had never seen this type of chrysanthemum.
Tomoe Nishiki (Sorry I couln't translate it)

These are also the old type of chrysanthemum. They were established 200 years ago. Inside of petal is crimson red and outside is golden yellow. Very gorgeous, huh?

Senbon-zaki (1000 branch flowering)

I couldn't believe but these flowers came from just one stalk. According to the signboard, producers of these chrysanthemum started to grow the base stalk from last autumn, made branch repeatedly, then made 250-400 floral buds, and finally, blow the same size of flowers simultaneously.
The upper is a little bit too early to appreciate, but good for learning the structure of Senbon-zaki.

I'd like to take off my hat to the producer's skil and effort.

Kiku Ningyo (Chysanthemum Dolls)

The theme of this year's Kiku ningyo was NHK's period drama "Atsu Hime (Princess Atsu)" .

When I was a child, Kiku ningyo dolls could be seen frequently at the place people gather like public park or amusement park in autumn. But, I heared that many of Kiku ningyo festivals have been aborted recently because of the unpopularity. I feel sorry that such a traditional exhibition, started in Edo-era, has been ebbing away.

FYI: Kiku Matsuri of Nan-yo city in Yamagata is the most famous Kiku ningyo festival having the longest history in Japan. Please look at the Kiku ningyo photos on the website. They are amazing.

This one is also a kind of the chrysanthemum doll?

This festival will be held until 23rd Nov.
Regarding the Yushima Tenjin, I have writen that history in the 2008 February posting.
Yushima Tenjin is near by the University of Tokyo. The closest station is Yushima of Chiyoda-line(Tokyo Metro).

Are you looking for the accomodation?
For a great selection of places to stay with discount prices visit Tokyo Hotels for more information.

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