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Silly season: Cherry tree blooming in autumn in central Japan shocks locals

Cherry flowers are seen blooming out of season in Nagoya's Chikusa Ward on Oct. 13, 2020. (Mainichi/Shinichiro Kawase)

NAGOYA -- A cherry tree beside the Yamazaki River in this central Japan city's Chikusa Ward, a popular viewing spot for the country's icon, has bloomed out of season.

    Some 20 cherry buds on the Somei Yoshino tree, which usually only flowers in spring, have bloomed. A city official in charge of managing the trees along the river said, "I'd never heard of these trees blooming during this season." Many people have stopped as they walked nearby to take photos of the odd sight.

    Nobuyuki Niimi, secretary-general at a local branch of the tree doctors' association in Japan, explained to the Mainichi Shimbun, "It suddenly became warm after the temperature dropped so I guess the tree may have mistaken that for spring. If the temperature drops, it will become dormant again."

    Masami Hasegawa, 79, who lives nearby, noticed a cherry flower blooming during a walk. He was deeply moved and said, "I've lived here for a long time but it's the first time I've seen this. This gives me energy. There seems to be some good happening toward the end of this year."

    According to the Nagoya Local Meteorological Office, temperatures of 25 degrees Celsius or higher have been recorded recently in Nagoya's Chikusa Ward, with the maximum temperature reaching 28.8 C on Oct. 11. Rain is forecast for the weekend and temperatures are expected to drop.

    (Japanese original by Shinichiro Kawase, Nagoya News Center)

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