One of my favourite places to visit in New York is the New York Botanical Garden in the Bronx. It’s an incredible place because there are so many different landscapes to explore and it’s magical at any time of year. Autumn is probably my favourite time to visit, though, because the gardens are especially beautiful and because it’s when Kiku comes to town! Kiku is Japanese for chrysanthemum and the Kiku exhibition at NYBG celebrates the incredible Japanese art growing meticulously trained kiku, and hanami, the traditional custom of enjoying the transient beauty of flowers.
It takes around nine months to grow a chrysanthemum plant from a tiny cutting into its completed spectacle and each of these incredible living structures is growing from a single stem (yes, that umbrella of white above is one stem!). While at the exhibition last week I overheard one of the NYBG guides explaining that the decay of each bloom is considered the most beautiful part of the process in Japanese culture. I think I fall more in love with the Japanese way of thinking by the day!