Japanese Cherry Blossom
On the 22 September the National Rhododendron Gardens, Olinda hosted the annual Hanami Flower Parks Victoria where thousands of visitor came to e Dandenong Ranges Gardens in celebration of the coming spring season to admire the spectacular cherry blossom grove.
The Hanami Festival is based on the Japanese tradition of ‘flower viewing’ and refers to the celebration and appreciation of the cherry blossom. In keeping with tradition, visitors were be treated to traditional Japanese flower arranging demonstrations, origami, bonsai, traditional Japanese drumming and tea making ceremonies.
Although we were stuck in the traffic jam for almost 3 hours to get there, it was well worth it as we were completely blown away by the beauty of these flowers. I never knew that our state could have the exotic flowers as this was our first time seeing these flowers and considering we have had a cold and wet winter it was a great opportunity for everyone to get out of their lounge rooms and see nature’s spectacular springtime show.
Entry to the gardens was free and like many of us it was a great time to have a picnic with friends and family. Although most of the good cherry blossoms tree were taken (we were meant to have a picnic under the trees as per tradition) we found ourselves settling in a nice hilly spot and enjoyed the picturesque and peaceful surrounds.There was also the option of dining at one of the food stalls on-site .
It was really fantastic to see all the people from different cultures and races at the event as well tourists mingling and enjoying what our state offers together .
Also you don’t have to go to Japan to enjoy cherry blossoms. These trees can be found in abundance in cold climate and mountain areas of Australia. To view the ornamental flowering cherries at their spring peak Peter Valder visited the aptly named ‘Cherry Cottage’ at Mt Wilson in the Blue Mountains of New South Wales.
Other places to view cherries in the Blue Mountains include the towns of Leura and Katoomba where flowering cherries are used as street trees and are in peak bloom in mid-October. Cherries can also be found in parts of the Dandenongs and in the Adelaide Hills and in cool climate gardens in much of southern Australia.
A big shout out to Park Victoria and the Australian Japanese Society for a truly wonderful event.