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Yoshino: Approaching Full Bloom

Kinpusenji Temple and cherry blossoms

Today I visited Mount Yoshinoyama to check out how the cherry trees have fared since our last visit. Yoshinoyama has thousands of cherry trees planted on its slopes and is a famous cherry blossom viewing spot in the mountainous region of Nara Prefecture. The most common cherry tree variety here is the yamazakura whose leaves develop together with the blossoms, unlike the mainstream Somei Yoshino variety.

Yoshinoyama is divided into four areas: Shimo Senbon at the bottom, Naka Senbon in the middle, Kami Senbon in the upper regions and Oku Senbon at the top. I only went up as far as the Kami Senbon area today, and saw all the different stages of bloom from full bloom at Shimo Senbon to closed blossoms at Kami Senbon. Rain is forecast for tomorrow, and I expect it to take some petals off the cherry trees in the Shimo Senbon area.

Schauwecker was in Tokyo today and reported that the season is past peak. Rain is forecast for most of the country tomorrow, and is expected to shorten the season in the capital. Sam visited the Fuji Five Lakes region today and reported that the blossoms were just opening. The cherry trees there should not be affected by tomorrow's forecast rain.

Shimo Senbon

Full Bloom

Today I found the cherry trees in the Shimo Senbon area to be at full bloom. The area around Yoshino Station and the nanamagari winding road had lots of trees at their peak. I expect tomorrow's forecast rain to take some petals of the blossoms and shorten the best viewing period.

View outside Yoshino Station
Yamazakura blossoms
Nanamagari winding road has lots of cherry trees
Mainstream Somei Yoshino cherry blossoms
Bloomz on the mountain
Food stalls and a hidden free space behind
Weeping cherry tree here has seen better days

Naka Senbon

Approaching Full Bloom

In the middle section of Yoshinoyama, I found the cherry trees here to be approaching their peak. As the Naka Senbon area covers a relatively wide area, the trees nearer to the upper region were just over halfway to their peak while those at the lower region were almost at full bloom. One of the popular cherry blossom viewing spots in this section is the Hitome-senbon viewpoint on the grounds of Yoshimizu Shrine. The Naka Senbon Park is also a popular place to picnic and enjoy the views of the cherry blossoms. Tomorrow's forecast rain should not impact the longevity of the blossoms too badly. I expect the blossoms here to reach their best in a day or two, and the best viewing period to continue through the coming weekend.

Hitome-senbon viewpoint at Yoshimizu Shrine
The much lauded view of a thousand cherry trees
Naka Senbon Park is a popular picnic spot
They're all cherry trees here
View from the deck at Nyoirinji Temple
Weeping cherry tree in the garden at Nyoirinji Temple almost at full bloom
Lots of weeping cherry trees here
Yamazakura blossoms
The bus that goes between Yoshino Station and Naka Senbon bus stop
Wall of cherry trees
3D sakura experience
Yamazakura blossoms
Different varieties of flowers here

Kami Senbon

Blossoms Opening

As I made my way towards the Kami Senbon area, the number of open blossoms petered out. The blossoms were less than midway towards their peak, and some trees had almost no open blossoms. I expect the blossoms here to reach their best by this weekend, and the best viewing to start later this week and continue into early next week.

Weaving through the cherry trees
Every turn a photo spot
This branch needs a few more days to reach its best
Walking up to the top
Half open, half closed
Much cherry trees, very sakura
Like fireworks in the day time
Situation at the Hanayagura viewpoint
View from Hanayagura
I think this view is called the Nunobiki-no-sakura because the flow of the cherry trees resemble a flowing piece of cloth