小寒 Lesser Cold: (Shōkan) January 5-9 (Micro-season 67)

芹乃栄 Seri sunawachi sakau: Water Dropwort Flourishes Water Dropwort/Japanese Parsley seri is a peppery spring herb that grows traditionally near mountain streams. It has a unique scent not dissimilar to watercress. Although references to it can be found in the “Nihon shoki” (the oldest chronicles of Japan), these days the number of producers has decreased […]

冬至 Winter Solstice: (Tōji) January 1-4 (Microseason 66)

雪下出麦 Yuki watarite mugi nobiru: Barley sprouts underneath snow Akemashite omedetou gozaimasu: Happy New Year! The New Year holiday has always been the most important celebration in the Japanese calendar, and is marked by many special customs that lend a sedate dignity to the transition from one year to the next. This year in particular, […]