Cherry blossoms cycling in Koriyama, April 8, 2020. (チャリで花見 郡山 2020年4月8日。)

(#Oldest Someiyoshino cherry tree, Koriyama, April 8, 2020. #日本最古 ソメイヨシノ 郡山 4/8/2020)
Today was the best day for cherry blossoms viewing in Koriyama. Cycling around some of the historic places in the town is a good exercise keeping safe distance from other people. Photo above is one of the oldest Someiyoshino variety of cherry trees in Japan. It is located inside Kaiseizan Park and its age is 142 years old making it very rare and oldest for the variety. The figure of the tree with its strong looking trunk and branches makes us feel the history. Even though, the tree makes fantastic bloom as you can see.
太い幹 鮮やかな花 歴史也

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A description board for the old tree was on site as shown above. It says the tree was planted in 1878, and since then a total of 3,900 cherry trees were planted in this area.

Cherry blossoms cycling tour started from Kinto Memorial Hall as shown above. The red and white building in the back was part of the oldest elementary school in Koriyama which was established in 1873.

Photo above shows cherry blossoms in Hayama Park today. The tower in the center is NHK’s radio tower.

The next stop was Koriyama Community Hall built in 1924 as shown above with cherry blossoms.

Photo above shows entrance gate of the former Fukushima Prefectural Junior-High School founded in 1889, which was the origin of the current Asaka High School.

Photo above shows Kaiseikan building which was a headquarter for Asaka Development project in early Meiji era. Emperor Meiji visited here twice in 1876 and 1881.

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Photo above shows Kaisenzan Great Shrine, where part of the deity was moved from Imperial family’s Ise Shrine.

(#Kaiseizan Park, cherry blossoms, Koriyama, April 8, 2020. #開成山公園 桜 郡山 4/8/2020)
Just across a road from the shrine is located Kaiseizan Park. Thousands of cherry trees bloom in this season as you can see in the picture above.

A part of the cherry blossoms can be seen across Isuzu Pond in the park as shown above.

The exact route and locations are shown in the map below. The map can be scaled up and down with a click and scroll.

Miharu cherry blossoms tour, April 7, 2020. (三春の桜巡り 2020年4月7日。)

(#Fukujuji, cherry blossoms, Miharu, April 7, 2020. #福聚寺 枝垂れ桜 三春 4/7/2020) 
Cherry blossoms season started in Miharu Town. Photo above was a fantastic view of a weeping cherry standing on the ground of Fukujuji Temple. I pedaled through Miharu Town today, viewing some of the famous cherry trees. They are shown below.
三春町では、桜のシーズンが始まりました。写真は、福聚寺の境内にあるすばらしい垂れ桜の姿です。鮮やかに 桜垂れる 福聚寺

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(#Takizakura, cherry blossoms, Miharu, April 7, 2020. #滝桜 三春 4/7/2020)
This was of course a view of the greatest cherry tree in Japan: Miharu Takizakura, a national natural monument which is more than 1000 years old.
滝桜 皆が認める 日本一

(#Takizakura, cherry blossoms, Miharu, April 7, 2020. #滝桜 三春 4/7/2020)
Here is another view of the tree taken from back side.

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In the center of Miharu Town there was a steep slope called Oshirozaka that led to a hill where old Miharu Castle once existed. Photo above shows a large weeping cherry tree that sits on the middle of the slope. There were many other cherry trees on the hill waiting for the best season.

(#Sessonzakura, cherry blossoms, Koriyama, April 7, 2020. #雪村桜 郡山 4/7/2020)
Close to JR Miharu Station, there was an old cherry tree called Sessonzakura as shown above. Actually, the location was in Koriyama. An old painter and monk called Sesson lived in the small hut under the cherry tree more than 400 years ago.

Lastly on the way back home, I stopped at Kowadaki Bridge over the Abukuma River. Cherry blossoms have just started and I could see Mt. Adatara in the far back with the river in front and cherry blossoms on the right as shown in the picture. By the way, at any of the above sites it was very easy to keep safe distance with other people, which was a must against coronavirus.

The exact route and locations are shown in the map below. The map can be scaled up and down with a click and scroll.

Late autumn views at Botan-en Garden, Sukagawa, Nov. 17, 2019. (須賀川牡丹園の晩秋(紅葉、寒牡丹など) 2019年11月17日)

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(Botan-en Garden, Sukagawa, November 17, 2019. 牡丹園 須賀川 紅葉 11/17/2019)
Today I visited Botan-en Garden in Sukagawa. I enjoyed late autumn views there including superb autumn maple leaves, winter flowering peony, and even a pair of mallards in the pond. The garden has many visitors in May from across Japan when breathtaking peony flowers bloom altogether in the vast ground. Photo above was autumn leaves view as of this morning.

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(Botan-en Garden, Sukagawa, November 17, 2019. 牡丹園 須賀川 紅葉 11/17/2019)
Photo above was another autumn leaves view in the garden.

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(Botan-en Garden, Sukagawa, November 17, 2019. 牡丹園 須賀川 寒牡丹 11/17/2019)
Some of the winter flowering peony were blooming as shown above. The flowers seemed to be bearing the cold wind today.
阿武隈の 寒さに負けず 牡丹咲く

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In the pond, several mallards were swimming or staying on a rock. I saw a pair of mallards sitting friendly on a rock with their necks pulled in as shown above.
岩の上 寒さに縮む つがい哉

Botan-en Garden is located 3.5km southeast of JR Sukagawa Station. You can walk 50 minutes or take a local bus.

The exact route and locations are shown in the map below. The map can be scaled up and down with a click and scroll.
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