Finally the mini-sunflowers bloomed, when I was away from Tokyo



Thanks, Shu, for taking this photo of the mini sunflowers, which I grew from seeds sent by Hiyoko from Europe.

Best present ever, from Hiyoko in the Netherlands



The best present I have received in a long time. This gorgeous letter, with an illustrated, fox character, and five types of seeds selected, in Belgium, to do well in flowerpots. They include mini sunflowers, mini cucumber, micro pea, rice beans, and micro basil.

Recently, a young friend was perplexed by the very concept of a stationery store. “What? Don’t you just send by phone and e-stickers?,” he asked. Some things must be analog.

Thank you, Hiyoko! The seeds are already srpouting.

Living and found desk decor add nature to work



At some point, my desk gained a bowl of air plants and small collection of foraged Tokyo nuts, seeds and a persimmon (pomegranate). Even in a small space, it’s nice to have nature near the computer.

New England wildflower blooms brightly on Tokyo balcony


I planted some “New England wildflowers” from seed, and this yellow flower quickly appeared on my Tokyo balcony. A few weeks later, the entire plant had died. I hope the seeds have ventured out in the neighborhood.

Below is a photo of the cute seed pack illustration which my friend Matt gave me in New York last June. Also irresistible is the “New Yorker tomato,” which I gave a late start too in Tokyo in July. I gave many seedlings to friends and colleagues.

Edo morning glory

Even though I planted the seeds back in May, it’s only recently that the Edo morning glory vines have climbed up to the top of the balcony and begun blooming. As their name implies, the flowers are most spectacular in the morning. By afternoon, they wilt and are finished. Each day there are about a dozen new flowers.

Last year, I visited the famous Iriya morning glory festival and bought five different colors. Last year I harvested seeds from all the plants (and also bitter melon, chamomile and some that I forgot). It’s interesting that all of my plants, and those I gave to friends, are this red and white variegated variety.

Here you can see that I stored the seeds in sake cups bought from a student at Shiho ceramic studio.