We have several blueberry bushes on the balcony. The fruits are small and full of flavor. I wish I had enough to make a blueberry pie.
This gorgeous blueberry plant, full of perfect fruits, is being sold at Marunouchi flower shop. I love how it’s getting more common to use edibles as decorative landscape.
Blueberries are blooming on my Tokyo balcony garden. I love how this bush is both decorative and edible. But mostly these flowers make me think of summer fruit.
I love sensing spring’s arrival on my Tokyo balcony. First butterfly of this year, more birds, blueberry bush flowering, strawberries taking shape.
Did you know that cosmos are a fall flower in Tokyo? You see them everywhere this time of year, so I picked up this one from my neighborhood flower shop. This fall my garden has a lot of pink (roses, fujibakama), deep blue (Okinawa morning glory, lavendar, salvia), and white and yellow (pansies, marigold, geranium). The blueberry bush leaves are also turning red and gold.
The season is turning. The air is suddenly much drier, the sky bluer, and the clouds puffy and dramatic. These late summer photos show the wildness I was able to achieve in my narrow balcony garden this year.
Above is the view from the kitchen door. There’s a tiny nursery school chair, an already fading sunflower, a last burst of blueberries, and murasaki shikibu, a fall flower that I just bought.
Below you can see the shelf full of my amateur ceramic flowerpots, which can also be seen from the living room. One pot has basil. I like how the garden path seems longer and more over-grown than it is.
I wish there were more.
Tokyo University of Agriculture Professor Suzuki is planning a firefly habitat at a junior high school. Each year, teachers and students from the Tokyo school visit Gunma to study fireflies. This year I was also invited.
Fireflies need clean water and darkness. According to Professor Suzuki, creating habitat in the city also requires a “social design.” The temple, cemetary, and senior center near the school are also invited to participate.
When we arrived at Kawaba-mura, the school girls weeded a rice field and played with frogs and crabs in the creek. Even though they are city kids, the students are very brave.
At night, we saw Genji fireflies and Heiki fireflies. There are a lot of fireflies on the edge between the forest and the rice field.
We stayed at a hotel called “Nakano Village” which on the inside is Japanese modern style, and on the outside the building looks like part of the hillside. It was designed by the famous Sakakura Associates.
Kawaba mura has many apple orchards, and recently they are also growing blueberries.
The trip made me think of the following:
- How can gardens be created in multiple connected sites?
- How can all city and country kids learn about each other’s environments and lives?
- How can cities begin to value darkness as essential to their vitality?
- How can kids and adults create habitat and support wildlife where they study, work, play, and live?
This is my first balcony blueberry. Since last year, I have noticed more blueberry plants for sale in Tokyo, from home centers to neighborhood flower and plant shops. I am eager to see how easy it is to grow them in Tokyo, especially in my balcony container garden.