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Kyoto, Japan

拾翠亭  (京都御苑内, 京都御所の南東 )

This cottage is located within Kyoto Imperial Palace (京都御所) and next to “Sento Gosho”. It belongs to one of the five regent houses, the Kujyo family (九條家 ), and it was built during the Edo-era. Its 3 acre property was largely demolished during the Meiji-era due to the fact that Kujo Michitaka (九条道孝) became one of the ministers to the Meiji Emperor and had moved to Tokyo. Luckly, among others, the present cottage and the Kujo family pond (九條池) have remained and restored. This cottage was named after the type of birds called “kawa-semi” (翠) which used to fly into the pond quite often.

As you can see in the image captured by William, it is quite impressive and almost overwhelming to see the crape myrtle (百日紅) flowers in full bloom. The crape mytle is known in Japan as “Saru-suberi”. Its surface after shedding of the outer most bark makes it rather slick, so it was playfully expressed and named that even the monkeys (saru) can’t climb the tree and slips off (suberu). Of course, in actuality, the monkeys can climb this type of tree with no problems.