Enthused by the royal visit of His Majesty the king and Her Majesty the Gyaltsuen, in November 2011 to the Fukushima prefecture where a massive earthquake that year inflicted major damages to the communities of the Miharu town, the Japanese people have started showing their sincere gratitude through planting special cherry saplings from the seeds of Taki-Sakura in Japan which is believed to be 1000- year old, in Bhutan.
According to the former Deputy Mayor of Miharu town, Kuniharu Hashimoto, such an initiative was deeply inspired by the visit of Their Majesties. He said that the earthquake-affected people were strongly impressed and emotionally moved by the Royal visit and the cherry trees depict the sincere goodwill from the people of Miharu town.
“The ceremonial plantation is to show respect to Their Majesties who graciously visited the affected area,” Kuniharu Hashimoto said.
He went on to say that the people of Japan were struggling to recover from the damages of the big earthquake when the personal console during the royal visit enhanced their recovery. Hence he said, such an initiative is to connect with the people of Bhutan as a return visit of the royal visit and beyond.
The first such ceremonial plantation was conducted in 2013 with the plantation of ten saplings of cherry blossom trees from the Miharu Taki-Sakura in Langjophaka memorial garden and Royal botanical garden in Serbithang.
According to an official from the Horticulture Department, Pema Choden, the ceremonial plantation is a gesture of the unstinted bond and friendship that the people of Bhutan and Japan share.
To commemorate the 30th anniversary of Japan -Bhutan Diplomatic relationship, a planting ceremony was organized at the Floriculture and Amenity Landscaping Centre, Dechencholing on March 3.