Hideshi Sobue
Nagoya City, Japan

Text and photos by Hideshi Sobue
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I am Japanese, 37 years old and live at Nagoya City (300 km from Tokyo to the west). I like all plants, especially big plants and large flowers. The lotus flower fascinates me.

When I was schoolboy, I read the book about Dr. Ohga and the Ohga lotus (Nelumbo 'Dahou Lian'). The seed from 2000 years ago was alive and sprouted. The lotus grew up and bloomed at last. I was very surprised. The flower was very beautiful. It is an unforgettable story for me.

I wanted grow the Ohga lotus myself. But there was no nursery that sold the lotus. It was with Buddha -- I heard we could see the lotus flower in the temple. I asked a few temples to share the tuber but they said NO. The last temple I visited, Zuikouin Temple in Kyoto, had 108 various lotuses. It was a very beautful scene and I observed the flowers eagerly. The Buddhist priest said to me, "We can share the tubers" and he gave them to me, the Ohga lotus too.

He introduced me to the representative of Kyoto Lotus Flower Association of which I am a member. The representative, Mr. Uchida, has collected 300 various lotus. He shares all tubers with us. He says, "If only one person keeps the lotus, it will disappear." I respect him very much.

I have 40 various lotuses and want more but my garden is limited. When I see a lotus flower in early morning of summer, it lets me forget anything bad. This year I will concentrate on the American yellow lotus that Babs and Rick gave me.


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