April is the season of sakura.
Cherry blossoms are blooming across Japan around this time.
Sakura means it is the season for Ohanami (お花見)*.
Every year in Japan, people would gather under the blooming sakura tree to eat and drink sake.
But this year seems like people are having less of the eating and drinking and more of the viewing.
This year Gardens by the Bay had a sakura event featuring HelloKitty, where they had real sakura trees imported from Japan on display.
For those of you who missed out; I've compiled three Ohanami related fun facts for you to have a taste of Ohanami:
1. The Color of Sanshoku-dango
The three colors of the sanshoku-dango** represent spring for pink, winter for white, and summer for green. Some say the reason why there is no autumn representation is that "Aki-ga-konai" (directly translates to autumn don't come) has the same sounding as "飽きがこない," which roughly means 'won't get bored eating.' There are several other meanings to the colors. For example, red and white keeps away evil spirits and so on (1).
2.Cherry Blossoms in Japan are Clones
80percent of the sakura trees in Japan are the same breed called the 'Someiyoshino,' and the most impressive thing is that most of them are clones. These sakura trees were planted from the Meiji period onwards, using the grafting technique (2).
3. The Oldest Sakura Tree
The oldest sakura tree in Japan is the 'Jindai-sakura,' in Otsuyama Jisso Temple, Yamagata prefecture. It is said to be approximately 2000years old. 10.3m high, and its trunk circumference is 11.8m. This sakura tree became a natural monument during the Taisho period and was also the first natural monument recorded in Japan (3).
See you next month!
Flower of the Month: Sakura
Meaning: Spiritual Beauty, Purity, Nobleness
*Ohanami (お花見) is a traditional custom in Japan of enjoying viewing cherry blossoms every spring. Commonly people gather under the sakura tree to have a picnic while appreciating the sakura.
**Sanshoku-dango (三色団子) is a Japanese sweet made of a mixture of rice flour, uruchi rice flour, and glutinous flour. Traditionally eaten during spring.
(1) "お花見団子の三色の意味は？," Japanese Foodstyling Culture Association, accessed April 16th 2021. https://www.
(2) 北杜市観光協会, ”山高神代桜,” ほくとナビ, accessed April 16th 2021. https://www.hokuto-kanko.jp/
(3) "ソメイヨシノ," Wikipedia, accessed April 16th 2021. https://ja.wikipedia.org/wiki/