(Flowering silk tree), c. 1830-1843

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Silk trees are a common sight in gardens and along boulevards in Japan. Their luxuriant foliage offers welcome shade in the heat of summer. Silk trees also produce elegant, pale pink flowers, as depicted here. Saigyo's rendering well represents their downy texture. Because its leaves close during the night and droop downward, the silk tree is popularly called "nemu no ki" or "sleeping tree" in Japanese. This unusual feature has inspired many poets who lyrically refer to "sleeping trees" in their verses about summer.

(Flowering silk tree)
Artist Life
born 1813
Accession Number
Curator Approved

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