As I left the Tohoku region and made my way south, white snow gave way to the gorgeous pink of sakura as I wrote about some weeks ago. However with their fleeting season now over, even in higher mountainous areas, Japan’s scenery is once again changing as the warmth of spring and summer take hold: All around us are countless shades of green that simply cannot be captured on film.
Sometimes Japan seems like an impossible array of colour: Their flowers are often brightly coloured to the point of almost hurting the eyes, and in late spring the new growth in the forest also seems to glow a brilliant green that would be hard to replicate artificially.
Particularly along Japan’s west coast, where there are less cities and people than the more travelled Seto Inland Sea side, there is more open natural environment, and that means an abundance of green.
Coming from a dry environment like Australia with a bushland made up predominantly of Eucalypts, these are the colours like I have never seen before. I’ll never forget my first summer in Japan when I was blown away by the bright green of the hillsides surrounding my town. Eventually of course the seasons will change again and the green of the forest will give way to equally amazing yellows, oranges and reds of the autumn foliage. But for now, please excuse me as I head out to marvel at the gorgeous greens that I see all around.