Small white "baikamo" flowers bloom in a clear stream in the Shiga Prefecture city of Maibara. The white flowers in the city's Jizo River add a nice touch to the former Nakasendo trail, one of the major routes that connected Tokyo and Kyoto in the Edo period (1603-1867). Baikamo is a perennial plant that belongs to the buttercup family, and grows in clusters in clear streams. Its flowers -- about 1 centimeter in diameter -- resemble plum flowers. According to the Maibara Municipal Government, baikamo began to flower earlier than usual this year, at the beginning of May, and they are typically at their most spectacular until around August.
(Japanese original by Daiki Takikawa, Osaka Photo Department)