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DSCN1306Are you familiar with your birth flower? Like birthstones, your birth flower is determined by the month you were born. The theory is that the month that a flower is assigned to is based on each flower’s natural growing month. I was born in November and my birth flower is the Chrysanthemum. I wasn’t really crazy about it when I first found out because they seem to be very common and not as exotic as I wanted my birth flower to be. This changed after I saw Kiku: The Art of the Japanese Garden exhibit at the NY Botanical Garden, and then learned a little bit more about the flower’s fascinating history.

Kiku: the Chrysanthemum exhibit at the Botanical Garden

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Lovely chrysanthemum bridges

“Kiku” means Chrysanthemum in Japanese and it is the country’s flower symbol for autumn. It was originally cultivated in China then brought over to Japan, where it won the hearts of many and it became the symbol and coat of arms of the Imperial family. The Chrysanthemum Throne, or the throne of the emperor of Japan, is the oldest continuing monarchy in the world. I thought that was very interesting and appropriate considering how mums are usually one of the longest lasting cut flowers that I have seen.

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These blooms are the size of my face!

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Rainbow of Kiku

Rainbow of Kiku

Although this exhibit was smaller than a previous one I have seen, I am still happy to have seen it. I loved seeing chrysanthemums in different colors, shapes and sizes. The curators also did a wonderful job of arranging them in pretty configurations. They looked very regal in their various poses. DSCN1318

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I won’t mind a flower covered Christmas tree.

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Bonsai-inspired arrangement

DSCN1308There was also another compelling, and a little scary, exhibit: the huge sculpture installations by Philip Haas called Four Seasons. It’s impressive and really worth seeing.DSCN1295 DSCN1294 DSCN1293 DSCN1292

Drop by your own city’s botanical garden and see the lovingly tended beauty of nature bloom before you. The best and my most favorite thing about it is that it’s never the same each time you go! Here are some images of the New York Botanical Garden, and other glorious blooms in season that you can view now. Enjoy!DSCN1296

Dome of the Botanical Garden

Dome of the Botanical Garden

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