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Smithsonian Folkways
Smithsonian Folkways • 2 years ago

The harmony between humanity and nature constitutes an ideal state in Japanese music. In spring, the beautiful but short-lived sakura (flowering cherry tree)—Japan's most celebrated plant whose blossom is the national flower—powerfully symbolizes the transient splendor of human life. Each year, in Washington, D.C., thousands of visitors savor the beauty of the cherry blossoms which have come to represent the friendship between the people of the United States and Japan.

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Japanese lantern with Cherry Blossoms (Sakura)

Sakura Lanterns, with Japanese kanji characters. Sakura (櫻花) means cherry tree in Japan, and this style of lantern is associated with the annual cherry blossom festival (hanami, 花見, lit. "flower viewing"). Hanami at night is called yozakura (夜桜, literally night sakura). In many places such as Ueno Park, these temporary paper lanterns are hung for the purpose of yozakura. [parts from Wikipedia]

Cherry Blossom Lanterns, Sakura, Japan. O my, o my! I think my obsession with pink trees just got waaaay worse! Maybe I should do a seperate board for them....Oh, and I want some of those Japanese lanterns!!

100th anniversary of the gift of Cherry Trees from the Japanese to the United States (planted in Washington DC) This photo is by Randall Wingett

I love Washington, D.C. this time of year.

More than 1.5 million visitors descend on Washington, DC each year to admire the blossoming cherry trees. The accompanying National Cherry Blossom Festival is a celebration of spring like none other, with three packed weeks of diverse activities that highlight the gift of the cherry blossom trees and the peaceful relationship between the United States and Japan. #DCCherryblossoms #CherryBlossomDC

The National Cherry Blossom Festival. See the blossoming of thousands of cherry trees on the Tidal Basin in Washington, DC. The capital welcomes spring with this annual tradition begun by the gift of 600 trees to the United States from Japan in 1912.

The National Cherry Blossom Festival is a spring celebration in Washington, D.C., commemorating the March 27, 1912, gift of Japanese cherry trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington. Mayor Ozaki donated the trees in an effort to enhance the growing friendship between the United States and Japan and also celebrate the continued close relationship between the two nations.[1]

Cherry Trees in Washington DC. Over 3,000 cherry trees were given to the U.S. by the mayor of Tokyo in 1912. 100 years later, the U.S. reciprocated by giving dogwood trees to the people of Japan. #Nature #CherryTrees

Cherry Blossoms in Bloom; Washington D.C. The Cherry Blossom Festival commemorates the 1912 gift of Japanese Cherry Trees from Mayor Yukio Ozaki of Tokyo to the city of Washington. They were almost removed in 1937/38 so the Jefferson Memorial could be built. Thankfully, the trees were not removed and the memorial could still be built. The festival draw millions of visitors each year from all around the world.