Celebrate the new year with Yoseue Dec. 16
Stripes Okinawa | .
published: December 10, 2018
Fireworks, parties, gifts and musical events may be the first things that come to mind for a New Year celebration. But for many people in Okinawa or Japan, it is also means a time to get hands on with a traditional craft.
Yoseue (group planting) is a form of gardening where different plants are put in a single pot or a container. It is also sometimes referred to as bonsai art.
In Japan, it is common to celebrate each season by putting together several seasonal plants for a Yoseue. Especially when January rolls around, it becomes a perfect item for a New Year’s celebration.
On mainland Japan, a Yoseue for the new year is most typically made with Shou Chiku Bai (pine, bamboo, Japanese apricot), which are known as a trio of plants valued in celebrations. But, here on Okinawa, there are sub-tropical plants that live up to such happy moments.
Starting Dec. 16, Bios on the Hill’s gardening center will host a workshop for Oshougatsu Yoseue (New Year group planting).
An instructor will teach how to make Yoseue by using colorful orchids that the facility is known for. This will be an opportunity to take part in a Japanese tradition and make your own group planting to adorn your room with gorgeous flowers. Tips on how to grow and take care of orchids will also be covered in the workshop.
Although this is targeted to Japanese audience and a language support may not be provided to a significant extent, the organizers, who have their confidence in teaching the skills to English-speaking audience with gestures, stated that they would be happy to have Americans. Questions are welcomed via email.
The 2 p.m. workshop is limited to 20 seats, and reservation is required. The cost to attend is 3,000 yen, which covers the class and materials.
This holiday season, why not immerse yourself in the local culture and celebrate the new year as the Okinawans do?