The Yard Full of Flowers

The morning after I got to my grandma’s house, I ventured outside to check out the yard. Because when you’re a single girl living in the city, a yard is a luxury.
My grandpa passed away a year and a half ago but he loved orchids. And he loved growing them in the yard. I don’t know much about orchids but I’ve heard that some orchids are very difficult to grow. You could say he had a green thumb for orchids. And now my grandma is taking care of them. With the way the pretty orchids are starting to bloom, I think my grandma has a green thumb, too!
These were some of my favorite plants I found around the yard.

My favorite orchid in the whole yard…love the yellow and fuchsia pink!

Another pink purple-ish orchid…doesn’t it look kind of like a face?

Nago-ran (名護蘭), another favorite, is a tiny orchid named after Nago City in Okinawa.

Sennenboku (千年木) has the prettiest leaves. Gorgeous fuchsia, don’t you think?
I forgot what this was called but I liked how delicate the flowers were.
Love how beautiful this hibiscus is. Hibiscus tea, not so much…but I love the flower!

The History of the Dogwood

As the cherry blossom season slowly comes to and end
the flowering dogwood starts to bloom.
I find this timing to be very fitting.
A lot of people know the history of how Japan
sent cherry trees to Washington DC in 1912.
A total of 3,020 trees, to be exact.
If we’re going to be even more specific
it was the city of Tokyo that sent the trees.
This was after learning that the First Lady Taft
was planning on planting cherry trees in Washington DC.
2,000 cherry trees were actually first sent in 1910
but they realized that the trees were infested
and they had to be burned.
So Japan sent another batch of cherry trees in 1912
which are the cherry trees that are currently growing in DC.
So we all know of this story and
how famous the cherry trees are in DC.
Did you know that the U.S. gave us back a tree?
(Am I the only one who didn’t know???)
That’s right.
They gave us the beautiful dogwood tree
as a token of thanks in 1915.
So the fact that the dogwood flowers start to bloom after
our cherry blossoms seems fitting some how.
And also coincidentally, dogwood means
“returning thanks” in flower language.
Or maybe it’s not a coincidence? 😀

The Aoyama Flower Market Tea House

Aoyama Flower Market is a popular flower shop
with over 80 shops around Greater Tokyo.
Last year they opened Aoyama Flower Market Tea House
behind their flower shop in Omotesando.
It’s really something.
Remember that movie The Secret Garden?
That garden they find inside the walls with all those vines?
It’s kind of like that.
Take a look.

We decided to have lunch there.
Masa got the beef stew lunch set
and I got the salad lunch set.

My salad was mostly all veggie
(just a little bacon!) so a perfect dish for vegetarians.
And my chocolate scented tea
(obviously not the official name!)
was quite delightful.
(what is it about tea that makes me want to use british-ish expressions?)

If you’re ever in Omotesando
you should definitely stop by this lovely cafe.
Plus you can grab a bouquet of pretty flowers
at the flower shop just outside on your way out, too!

5-1-2 Minami Aoyama
Minato-ku, Tokyo
Monday-Saturday: 11am-9pm
Sunday, Holidays: 11am-7pm