Thursday, August 2, 2012

Alpine Meadow and Aqua Fairy

It would be a shame not to enjoy the blessing of nature to make an escape from heat waves we are now in.
At the top of Mt. Ibuki (1337m), the alpine meadow is now the best season for various wild flowers. ( related post is here)
クガイソウ(kugaisō) 
メタカラコウ(metakarakō)
ミヤマコアザミ(miyamakoazami)  シシウド(shishiudo)

イブキトラノオ (ibukitoranoo)

If you are lucky enough, you can see the whole Lake Biwa, the biggest lake in Japan, below from the western slope of the mountain. When I went there, it was a poor visibilty but several photographers were waiting patiently for the fog to disperse.









メタカラコウ(metakarakō)




                                                キバナカワラマツバ、オオバギボウシ

The alpine meadow here has been known as a depository of medicinal herbs since early times. Back to the time of 織田信長(Oda Nobunaga, 1534~1582, he ordered Portuguese missionary to bring medicinal herbs from Europe and transplant them in the field of Mt. Ibuki. . I happened to see  キバナノレンリソウ (kibana-no-renriso, meadow vetchling,which is thought to have come along at that time and to have become native to this place.

The temperature is 8 to 10 degrees lower here. Besides, occasional  mists rising from the bottom is a natural air conditioner.

On the way home from it, I stopped by 醒井(Samegai), where it used to flourish as the 61st inn town of 中山道 (Nakasendo): one of the two routes that connected Edo, the present Tokyo, and Kyoto in Edo period (1603~1867). There still have old houses and streets that remind you of those days, however, what attracts visitors here now is 梅花藻(baika-mo; water weed which have tiny little flowers like Japanese apricot flower. They only grow in a crystal clear stream so you can see them at only limited places in Japan.

mingled with reflection of potted flowers on the bridge

I was not able to capture the detailed
     picture of the flowers under water,
 so this image is from here








地蔵川(Jizo Riverwhere they grow is not a big river and local people use it to cool water melons, tomatoes, or ラムネ(bottled lemonade for sale. There are some small bridges over the stream and I found several Sunday painters and photographers enjoying spending their own times leisurely on the bridges. I felt I was in a different time and place in that special district.
















                                A dog, while taking a walk,  can't resist playing in the river.




居醒の清水(Isame-no-shimizu) is a water-spring where Jizo River flows from. A legend says it was where 日本武尊 (Yamato Takeru) recovered his health by cooling off in the water after wounded in fighting against the god of Mt. Ibuki. He was said to name the place Isame-no-shimizu.



地蔵川の梅花藻
(baika-mo at Jizo River)

伊吹山の花畑
(alpine meadow at Mt. Ibuki)

56 comments:

  1. 息吹山、梅花喪、養老の滝はその方面の3つの涼景のようですね。 梅花藻は写真で見るより、ビデオの方がよくわかります。こう暑いと梅花藻になりたい・・・。 写真とてもきれいです。ヘッダーのは印象派の絵のようですね。

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 昨日か一昨日の新聞に地蔵川の梅花藻が載っていました。今頃が一番の見頃のようです。300メートルくらいの区間ですが、ほんとにその一画だけ涼感が漂っていました。水に冷やしてあった瓶のラムネが懐かしく、買い求めました。最後の写真は、なるほど滝のように見えますが、清水が湧き出ている所です。

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  2. Your photos group the wild flowers together like an arrangement. I like to pick small flowers (and wild ones) from my mother's garden for her. I like the blue ones with spikes, specially.

    I have always loved water flowers. It seems almost magical to me that flowers could grow under water or only in water. Not only do I like to see water lilies, which are quite showy, but I also like the sheets of tiny white flowers on the water weed that grows in running streams in some areas. I can't tell if it is the same as the water weed in your pictures, though.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. As far as Baikamo goes, they are a species indigenous to Japan. However I think there are similar ones at your place. The fact they are growing shows the water is clean and cool all through the year. When the volume of water in the river increases, the flowers come to surface.

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  3. Your photo of the baika-mo looks just like an Impressionist painting!

    The tiny mountain flowers remind me so much of South Africa's fynbos. Beautiful.

    Enjoy the cool mountains on behalf of us city folk in Tokyo! It's getting hotter, and the cicadas have started singing VERY LOUDLY. ^^

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for a link of fynbos. That looks like a fascinating place! A huge scale of biodiversity. If only that is much nearer to visit!

      Now we are having a thunderstorm outside. it is scary but hopefully it will let up and bring cool air afterward.

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  4. Lovely, spectacular photos, cosmos. The place looks like a paradise! The flowers in all their variety of colors are very refreshing and the misty top of Mt. Ibuki looks wonderful! I would love to climb there someday and have a glimpse of the River Biwa from atop especially during the summers time. The mingled reflections look ethereal, everything is so pretty and beautifully captured. Thanks for this fascinating tour... I felt like I was there with you all along.

    Wish you a very happy week ahead, cosmos! :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Hello Arti,
      Lake Biwa is situated on the border of Shiga, north of Kyoto, and Gifu. From Lake Biwa, you can see Mt. Ibuki. The alpine meadow at Mt. Ibuki is quite popular among a wide age group thanks to the car road weaving through to near the top of it. Of course not a few people climb from the bottom. Which would you prefer?
      I wish I could have taken you there if you had stayed here much longer.

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  5. 高山植物の宝庫ですね!名前を知っているとより楽しめるだろうと想像します。ちょっとした怪我で、家にばかりいるのですが、居ながらにして山の空気を感じとることができました。cosmosさんらしいすがすがしいポスト、ありがとうございます。

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    Replies
    1. 怪我の具合いかがですか?早く治って気晴らしに涼みに行けるといいですね。草花の名前は似たようなのが多くて、なかなかわかりません。でも知ると、ああ、これがそうなんだって一層愛着がわいてきます。ガイドさんが付いているグループに紛れ込んで、ちょっと話を聞くのも面白いものですね。お大事にして下さいね。

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  6. Such beauty! Your pictures are wonderful--the one of the reflections reminds me of Monet; it's a work of art. Thank you for this lovely post.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I just saw that you are using the picture I love as your banner (?) at the top of your blog. It would be beautiful framed.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you Jen for stopping by. I wish those pictures help visitors here feel a bit cooler.

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  8. Your photos are spectacular, and the impressionistic one is definitely my favorite. It's interesting that the European missionary was told to import medicinal plants. I would have thought that just the opposite was true, that the Europeans would be collecting specimens to send home.

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    Replies
    1. Now that you said so, it could have been possible. Portuguese were the first Europeans to arrive in Japan in 1543. Western medicines were also introduced through them. Though some people here already used some plants or herbs as a folk remedy,it was a missionary who advised Oda Nobunaga to grow herbs which were used in their country. Meadow vetchling itself was not a medicinal herb but was thought to have mingled with them.

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  9. さまざなま色と可憐な姿形の 高山植物が 山の斜面のあちらこちらに咲く様子を見せて頂けて感激です。山を登ってこそ得られる心洗われる風景ですね。さらにその名前もご存知なcosmosさんをお迎えして、花々もきっと嬉しいことでしょう。 梅花藻はその名のとおり梅のような白い花が水中で咲く様子に、さかなくんのように ギョギョギョ!?と驚きました。清らかな流れの美しい藻と浮かぶオフィーリアを一瞬想像させる神秘的な美しさです。現実では、その流れに遊ぶお洒落なワンコが素敵です。

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 何年か前はふもとから登ったのですが、今回はドライブウェイを使って駐車場まで(1260m)。
      日本100名山にも選ばれていますが、ご覧のとおり頂上は花畑です。
      梅花藻は水中花とは知りませんでした。もっとも水量が増えれば花は川の表面に上がってくるらしいですが。今頃はツアー客でまた賑わっていることでしょう。ワンコがまず水をペロペロと味見して、思わずジャブジャブ入って行ったところをパチリでした。

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  10. Such loveliness of alpine meadows and water! Wonderful shots.

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  11. こんばんは。去年、伊吹山と醒井に行って来ました。 とても懐かしいです。バイカモは清流にしか育ちませんが、とても可憐ですね。

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 伊吹山と醒井はやはりコースになっているのでしょうか。たくさん山登りもされているMinoruさんには、この山は少し物足りなかったのでは。梅花藻が育つ清流があるという事がうれしいです。ブログにアップされているなら是非拝見したいです。

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    2. バイカモの写真は白馬の近くの湿原で今年の5月に撮ったのが最新です。
       http://serendipity05.jugem.jp/?eid=402
       伊吹山のブログは古くて探せませんでした。

      Delete
  12. Hi,Cosmos.
    1300メートルの高い山に登るとこんなに沢山の美しい高山植物が咲いているのですね。私にとっては珍しい名前の花ばかりです。可憐な花と蝶々、霧の中を歩かれたなんて、生駒山に登るのさえ大変がっている私には、本当に羨ましい限りです。ワン君涼しそう!ミヤマコアザミと シシウドの写真がお気に入りです。ボケなのでしょうか?霧の中なのでしょうか?紫と白の色あいは控えめで絵葉書にしたいような写真ですね。
    Have a good week
    Tomoko

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. 先ほどのコメントにも書きましたが、ドライブウェイを使えば比較的楽に行けますよ。西、中央、東とそれぞれ遊歩道コースがあります。今回は西遊歩道を上がり、東遊歩道で下りて、約1時間40分。中央遊歩道を歩けば約20分で頂上に行けます。是非行ってみて下さい。バスツアーもこの時期よく出ているようですよ。多分醒井も含まれていると思います。

      Delete
  13. ごぶさたしています。
    伊吹山、ステキですね。1300メートル超だと下界とは隔絶した世界が広がっているんですね。どの写真もとてもきれいです。特にバイガモ、印象派のようにやさしく撮れていて、うっとりします。
    こちらは暑いです。くれぐれもご自愛くださいね。

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. お元気ですか?伊吹山は優しい山のイメージです。高山植物は「伊吹山固有種」も多く、(と言っても私もあまりよく知らないのですが)貴重な自然の宝庫のようです。あの写真の「キバナノレンリソウ」もたまたまガイドさんが説明しておられたのを漏れ聞いたものです。家族連れも多く、自然に触れられる良い憩いの場となっています。
      昨日の雷雨の後、今日も少ししのぎやすく感じられます。そちらはいかがですか?

      Delete
  14. 伊吹山、涼しそうですね。高山植物の宝庫ですね。植物の好きなcosmosさんにはうってつけの場所ですね。シシウドっていうんですね、白い花。これを撮ってみたいと思っています。
    バイガモのヘッダーは光のゆらめきが印象的です。きれいな、冷たい水と戯れたいワンちゃんの気持ちわかります。ユーモラスでおもしろいです。

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. これで4~5回目くらいかな。スキー場が無くなったようで、ゴンドラが停止していました。3合目まで乗っていくつもりだったのですが。仕方なくふもとから歩き始めたのですが、時間の都合もあり途中で引き返して、ドライブウェイを使いました。年々、体力が落ちてきているようです。楽な方に流れてしまいますね。でも花畑も楽しめたし、気持ち良い程度のウォーキングもでき満足でした。

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  15. Hi Cosmos!

    Looks like a nice place to spend a day there. I like クガイソウ, it's like a gentle brush for painting. The fog adds mystery to this place.

    I read "A Blind man's story" by Jun'ichirō Tanizaki a few days ago, and lake Biwa was featured there. I was thinking about Japanese blogs I read, and then you actually posted about area near the lake! I like such coincidence :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You like Junichiro Tanizaki? Actually I didn't know "A blind man's story". At first I thought it was 春琴抄(shunkinsho, A portrait of Shunkin) and googled it and knew it was 盲目物語 (moumoku-monogatari). Yes. Oichi-no-kata lived in a castle on the hill overlooking Lake Biwa. Looking back, she must have seen Mt.Ibuki.
      I like such coincidence too. Happy reading, Ekaterina!

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    2. Thank you! ^^ I have one book of stories by Tanizaki. I like to read Japanese authors, to learn more about culture and people of Japan. Though mostly I read poetry.

      Delete
  16. Cosmos,
    Viewing your photos, I am catching cool and comfortable breezes!! I was going to join a bus tour, but I didn't. You made me regret so much!
    I have taken photos of Baigamo in a small pond of a shrine. But,I am sure Baigamo are much more beautiful in this natural pure stream from the mountains!!
    keiko

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  17. Again snowwhite.

    PS,
    a bus tour → a bus tour to Mt. Ibuki

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. The other day, I happened to watch the program which featured on one photographer, who has been enthralled by 梅花藻 in Kakita River in Shizuoka. The water source comes from springs created by rainfall and melting snow on Mt. Fuji. Water looked extremely clean and so is 梅花藻. 居醒の清水 here is also listed one of 平成の名水100選.
      Maybe a bus tour to Mt. Ibuki includes this place. Why don't you try next time, Keiko-san?

      Delete
  18. Hello Cosmos!
    I have somehow missed your post and I see it's a week old! It's interesting to see some flowers I know growing on your beautiful Japanese hillside.The water weed looks identical to plants I've seen in Cornwall,I suppose it's possible they arrived as plants were moved around the world.It would be wonderful if you could send us some of your heat........just a little!!!

    I've left an answer to your question in my comment box.
    Ruby

    ReplyDelete
  19. Hi Ruby, I'm glad you noticed this post!
    Funny Jenny Woolf also said in her comment that she has seen this kind of water weed with tiny white flowers somewhere in your country. It is possible it WAS Baikamo. How interesting!
    Are you sure you'd like this sweltering heat...even a little? You know "the grass is always greener on the side of the fence"
    Thank you for answering my question in your post.

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  20. Cosmos,have you seen the beautiful Pre-Raphaelite painting by John Everett Millias,of Ophelia floating in a stream with water weed? You'll find it on Wikipedia if you like.

    Happy weekend!
    Ruby

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    Replies
    1. Thank you Ruby. What a beautiful painting!

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  21. Hello, cosmos.

      Awe inspiring your works...

      Thank you for visiting my blog.
      I am honored to your visit.

      The prayer for all peace.

    Have a good weekend. From Japan, ruma❃

    ReplyDelete
  22. °º♡
    °.¸♡
    º° ♫♡彡° ·.
    Tudo muito lindo, a paisagem, as flores, os reflexos na água!!!
    Bom fim de semana!
    Beijinhos.
    Brasil
    •.¸¸°♡彡°¸¸.•

    ReplyDelete
  23. How lovely to have this walk up there. Great flowers and I like the pictures with the butterfly very much and that walking up the hill photo.

    Hope you have a good time over there:-) Hugs from Tania

    ReplyDelete
  24. Ruma, I am always attracted by the beauty you show to us in your blog. Thank you for coming.

    Magia, I wish I could read Portuguese but your message always looks lovely.

    Spiderdama, thank you for coming! I hope everything is fine with you.

    ReplyDelete
  25. ♡¸.°.¸♫♫♪

    Bom fim de semana!
    Beijinhos.
    Brasil
    ♡彡♫♪°.¸.•°`

    ReplyDelete
  26. beautiful beautiful. just waiting for us to notice. wow. great photos!!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Thank you for coming and leaving a nice comment, Annmarie.
      It's amazing how you manage to keep in touch with such a large follower!

      Delete
  27. Dear Keiko,

    I'm glad you can still find such green and cool oasis in Japan. The place is splendid! I'd give anything for a short breath of "natural air conditioning" there!
    How I miss green myself, after the tragic sight of my birth place, completely burnt by the heat...

    The custom of cooling fruits and vegetables in the cold waters of streams is very common in Romania also, to the countryside. It's a great way of preserving and cooling food without wasting any amount of energy, isn't it? The paragraph though, brought into my mind the bucolic images from Studio Ghibli's "Omohide Poro Poro". Did you know one of its soundtrack's song is Romanian? :)
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1yB6WXUHIA8

    Thank you for your nice visit and have a great weekend!

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Roxana. I know how you feel to see your birth place is not what it used to be. I also hear a granary in the US is suffering a record drought this year, which they say inevitably will have an ill effect on export...
      Anyway, thank you for telling the movie "Omoide Poro Poro". Actually I didn't see it but thanks to the youtube you showed, I knew the theme song was a translation from my favorite song "The Rose". The subtitle showed at the bottom is Romanian?
      Thank you for coming, Roxana

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    2. p.s
      Sorry, I may have confused you. What I meant by the song is this:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eC7Qo7xIf28&feature=related

      Delete
    3. Keiko, no, the subtitle is in Spanish. Maybe you saw a resemblance because both Romanian and Spanish are Latin languages. For me it's quite handy to understand Spanish, Italian, French, Portuguese... because of the common basis.
      The video of which I added the link has the Romanian name of the song "Frunzulita lemn adus" translated into English as "Fluttering Green Leaves".

      I warmly recommend the movie, it's absolutely great! Actually, one of my Ghibli favorites. :)

      PS "Everything is very beautiful, the landscapes, the flowers, the water reflections. Have a good weekend! Kisses. Brasil" - this is the translation of Magia da Ines's comment. I hope you don't mind... :)

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    4. Wow, Roxana! Thank you so much for taking the trouble. You are linguistically talented as well! How many languages can you handle?


      P.S I watched the movie. I liked it very much. Thank you for telling me!

      Delete
  28. 先日はコメントありがとうございました。
    とても嬉しかったです。
    最近写真を撮りに行くことができず更新も滞っていました。
    仕事も一段落しましたのでまた撮影に出かけたいと思っています。
    これからも宜しくお願いいたします。

    素敵な写真楽しみにしています。

    ReplyDelete
  29. Thanks for sharing about this cool and quiet place.

    ReplyDelete
  30. ¸.•°`♪♪♫

    Bom fim de semana!
    Beijinhos.
    °ºBrasil♫º
    ♫♪.•彡♡彡•.♪♫

    ReplyDelete
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    Replies
    1. Thank you Shakeel Ahmed for stopping by this post and leaving such a nice comment!

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