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Monday, October 04, 2010

Higan-bana Lycoris


This time of year sees the spectacular flowering of the higan-bana. Higan is a period of Buddhist reflection around the time of the autumn equinox and the flowers take their name from this.


Higan-bana or Lycoris often grow at the sides of rice fields as the bulbs are poisonous and deter pests. Chinese and Japanese Buddhist tradition has the flowers also grow in hell, the bright red blooms guiding souls into the next incarnation. Thus the flowers may be seen at Japanese funerals and are not therefore used in bouquets.

Higan-bana Lycoris

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