Return to Top
Return to November


Chrysanthemum (kiku) was brought in from China. The flower is cultivated extensively and far surpasses in beauty the chrysanthemum of China. With over one thousand years of experience in its cultivation the Japanese horticulturists have created somthing that is purely Japanese. The sixteen-petalled chrysanthemum is the emblem of the Imperial Family. White and yellow are the most popular colors. Love for kiku of Japanese people is as great as that for sakura. Sakura put flowers in spring and kiku in autumn. The chrysanthemum exhibitions and festivals are held at many places throughout Japan at this time of the year.


Odawara Castle was the family residence of powerful feudal lord Hojo. The original castle was besieged in 1590 by Toyotomi Hideyoshi and the Hojo family was overthrown. During the Edo period, Okubo, a retainer of Tokugawa Ieyasu, became the lord of the castle and reconstructed the castle but the castle was heavily damaged by the earthquake in 1703. Further, at the time of the Meiji Restoration, the castle was abandoned and demolished. The impressive present castle was rebuilt on the basis of data drawn during the Edo period in 1960 by the strong desires of the citizens.