Tag: International Women's Day

Wattle Day

It’s officially Wattle Day in Japan today, and I’m absolutely delighted to have a thriving wattle growing in our garden.

I guess a little explanation is necessary.

March 8 is Mimosa no Hi, literally, the Day of Silver Wattle.

The flowers mark International Women’s Day, and the idea of giving women silver wattle (called mimosa outside of their native Australia) emanated from an Italian communist politician in the 1940s because the beautiful yellow flowers were more readily available than other floral items frequently presented to women around the world at the time. It’s not a national holiday in Japan, and not really widely acknowledged. It’s still a man’s country here.

The wattle is, of course, Australia’s national flower. (Strictly speaking, the golden wattle is the Australian symbol, but I can’t tell the difference, so in typical Aussie fashion, near enough will be good enough in this case!)

Wattle Happen Next?

The first blossoms of our wattle tree

It’s becoming increasingly clear that spring is not too far away, and the wattle tree in Kangaeroo Corner is giving hints of something about to spring into action.

March, which starts tomorrow (der!), is traditionally a coldish month, with a warm day every few days here and there.

This winter has been mild, especially when compared to the chilly one last year.

But it’s still too bloody cold for too bloody long for my liking.

Nonetheless, starting today we have a week of relatively warmer weather forecast.

And I’m excited for the garden, particularly our wattle tree, which looks poised to burst forth in a wash of gold any moment now.

Neighbors a couple of doors down from us also have a wattle tree and the blossoms have been vibrant for a few days now, but our tree has little more than buds, so I am living with a large dollop of envy!

(The neighbors have a British son-in-law who shares a surname with me and welcomed me warmly when I moved in because of this, and maintained very friendly relations thereafter, so it’s a friendly jealousy rather than a spiteful envy.)

Golden wattle, known by the academic name of acacia pycnantha, is Australia’s national flower.

Our tree, and most of the others found in Japan, Europe and outside of southeastern Australia, are silver wattle, or acaia dealbata. I can’t tell the difference, to be honest.

And it also has a significant role in Japan in March, where March 8 has been designated at Mimosa Day to coincide with International Women’s Day and referring to mimosa, the name given to the silver-leafed wattle mainly outside of Australia.

More to follow on this topic for sure.