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Autumn Color Report 2010

This is the official autumn color report for 2010. Please visit also our guide to autumn leaves for more general information and our schedule of upcoming reports.

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2010/12/09 - Tokyo Report
by schauwecker

Beautiful colors around the Shinjuku Gate of Shinjuku Gyoen

Tokyo is among the last places in Japan to see autumn colors every year, with the peak of the season usually occurring around late November to early December. Tokyo is also the destination of our last autumn color report of this year, on which I visited Shinjuku Gyoen, the Icho Namiki, Koishikawa Korakuen and Rikugien.

Although barren trees dominated the scenery at Shinjuku Gyoen, there were still some pockets of colors to be found. The best place for autumn foliage was the park's Japanese garden where maple trees were generally on the decline, but a few exemplars still provided some vibrant colors that attracted photographers like magnets.

The Japanese Garden of Shinjuku Gyoen
Brilliant colors in the Japanese Garden of Shinjuku Gyoen

Another good spot for autumn colors in Shinjuku Gyoen was momijiyama or "maple mountain". The trees in the area were still at a surprisingly unadvanced state with lots of green and greenish yellow. I am not sure whether they will all eventually turn red. But if they do, they would likely be providing autumn colors into the second half of December.

Momijiyama in Shinjuku Gyoen
Surprisingly unadvanced maple trees on Shinjuku Gyoen's Momijiyama

Next I visited the Icho Namiki or "Ginkgo Avenue" near Aoyama-Icchome Station, where I confirmed the end of the autumn color season. Although some of the trees in the second row still carried some leaves, most of the foliage has dropped, and barren trees were in the majority.

The koyo season is practically over along the Ginkgo Avenue

Koishikawa Korakuen, on the other hand, was still worth an autumn color visit. The peak of the season has clearly passed already, but quite a few maple trees along the central pond's shores still provided some outstanding colors, especially in combination with today's fine weather and good light conditions. The colors should last a few more days.

Brilliant colors in Koishikawa Korakuen
Koishikawa Korakuen with Tokyo Dome as borrowed scenery
Brilliant colors in Koishikawa Korakuen

I concluded this year's autumn color reporting with a visit to Rikugien, the highest rated Japanese garden in Tokyo, where I found a koyo situation similar to Koishikawa Korakuen's. Here too, the colors were generally on their decline, while scattered trees were still close to the peak of their seasonal beauty and continued to provide a good reason for an autumn color visit.

A maple tree reflects in a canal at Rikugien

We will resume reporting about the beauty of Japan's trees in approximately three months from now when the cherry blossom front is expected to reach the islands of Kyushu and Shikoku.

Cherry blossom buds at Shinjuku Gyoen

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List of Posts:
2010/12/09 - Tokyo Report
2010/12/06 - Kamakura Report
2010/12/01 - Kyoto Report

2010/11/30 - Tokyo Report
2010/11/26 - Kyoto Report
2010/11/26 - Osaka Report
2010/11/25 - Kyoto Report
2010/11/24 - Tokyo Report
2010/11/24 - Kyoto Report
2010/11/23 - Kyoto Report
2010/11/19 - Kyoto Report
2010/11/19 - Sakurayama Report
2010/11/18 - Nara Report
2010/11/17 - Kyoto Report
2010/11/17 - Ise Report
2010/11/16 - Tokyo Report
2010/11/16 - Koyasan Report
2010/11/15 - Kyoto Report
2010/11/10 - Kyoto Report
2010/11/09 - Fujigoko Report
2010/11/05 - Yamadera Report
2010/11/04 - Daisen Report

2010/10/27 - Kuju Report
2010/10/27 - Nikko Report
2010/10/26 - Kirishima Report
2010/10/19 - Noboribetsu Report
2010/10/15 - Akita Report
2010/10/14 - Nikko Report
2010/10/14 - Akita Report
2010/10/05 - Nikko Report

2010/09/29 - Oze Report
2010/09/15 - Kurodake Report
2010/09/14 - Asahidake Report

Tours and Experiences