Outline of Exhibition

Traditional Japanese Morning Glories
Traditional Japanese Morning Glories

The morning glory (Asagao) has been cherished in Japan since ancient times. Japan repeatedly experienced a number of morning glory booms particularly in the latter part of the Edo period, namely in the Bunka, Bunsei and Tempo eras (1804 – 1844), Kaei and Ansei eras (1848 – 1860) and Meiji and Taisho eras (1868 – 1926). During these booms, mutant morning glories were produced to enjoy a diversity of changes and combinations of leaves and flowers. This is peculiar in the world as they were produced by discovering mutation using today’s genetics terminology and establishing it as a strain. At the end of the Edo era in particular, a great number of varieties were produced. Unfortunately, some of them were overshadowed by simple large-blossomed morning glories and became extinct before becoming popular among people. However, others have been conserved by the efforts of some hobbyists, although they were not cultivated widely, and have survived even today.

The National Museum of Japanese History has exhibited these traditional morning glories produced by using the original knowledge and technologies accumulated since the Edo period as historical resources to make them known widely among people and consider the relations between people and plants since 1999. This year’s exhibition has the same purpose as before. Especially this time, panels on the theme “How to Grow and Enjoy Morning Glories” will be displayed and also exhibit the apetalous (petal-less) morning glory which was discovered in the 2005 exhibition.

Period Aug. 4 (Tue) - Aug. 30 (Sun), 2009
Venue Botanical Garden of Everyday Life, National Museum of Japanese History
Admissions ¥100
Groups of 20 or more: ¥50 per person
* Free admission for children junior high school age and younger
* Free admission for high school students every Saturday
Hours 9:30 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. (no entrance after 4:00 p.m.)
* The Garden will open at 8:30 a.m. on Thursday Aug. 13 to Wednesday Aug. 19, 2009.
* Viewing is best in the early morning due to the special way in which the morning glory bloom.
Closed Aug. 17 (Mon), and 24 (Mon)
* The exhibition is opened on Aug. 10.
Sponsor National Museum of Japanese History

Exhibition Lineup

Morning glories bred and grown by us will be exhibited in pots in the greenhouse, Azuma-ya and Yoshizu exhibition hall of the Botanical Garden of Everyday Life. The contents of the exhibition are shown below. The following varieties will be exhibited by timing the display to the flowering.

  • Mutant morning glories: 36 Masaki strains and 16 Demono strains (including the apetalous morning glory discovered by the Museum in 2005)
  • Large-blossomed morning glories produced since the Meiji period: About 20 strains
  • Closely related species of morning glories produced in Europe and North America: About 5 strains

Green, round delicate leaves, apetalous duplicate flower

Green, round delicate leaves, apetalous duplicate flower

Green, cordate delicate leaves, red, margined, side-reduced, duplicate flower

Green, cordate delicate leaves, red, margined, side-reduced, duplicate flower

Danjuro

Danjuro

Green, contracted leaves, lilliputian, red, tube-white, fully-open flower

Green, contracted leaves, lilliputian, red, tube-white, fully-open flower

Yellow mutable, hoe-shaped leaves, purple in white, flecked, fully-open flower

Yellow mutable, hoe-shaped leaves, purple in white, flecked, fully-open flower

Masaki Greenhouse

Masaki Greenhouse

   

Note: Please note that items in the exhibition are subject to change.