Cock’s comb and Kochia

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Cock’s comb and Kochia in Shinrin Park (Musashi Kyuryo Park) in the Hiki District of Saitama Prefecture, Japan, October 10th 2019.

Typhoon number 19, or Typhoon Hagibis as the foreign press is calling it, is on its way. And by all accounts its a big one, possibly even the largest in recorded history. Knowing that we will have at least a couple of days of being stuck inside due to high winds and record rainfall, I jumped in the car and head to Shinrin Park. One of my favourite places to visit in October each year…

Shinrin Park / Musashi Kyuryo Park

Shinrin Park is a massive – 304 hectare – park in Namegawa in the Hiki District of Saitama Prefecture. Its official name is Musashi Kyuryo Park, but it is rarely called that. Within Saitama it is known as Shinrin Park, Japan’s first national government park.

Throughout the year they have seasonal flowers and events. Some of the seasonal flowers are in a fixed location, others change every few years. The park is picturesque all year round. Autumn is one of my favourite times to visit because they have both seasonal flowers and Halloween decorations with night illumination.

October Scenes in Shinrin Park

  • Petunia
  • Dahlia
  • Cock’s comb
  • Kochia
  • Halloween Decorations
  • Halloween Night Illumination

October Flowers Shinrin Park

There are currently three main flower fields during the month of October: petunia, cock’s comb and kochia. There is a Dahlia garden in October too and you can also see seasonal flowers in smaller displays dotted around the park.

Petunia & Dahlia

The Petunia are close to the West gate, in the field behind the Musashi Kid’s Dome and in front of the west gate bike rental shed.

The Dahlia garden is close to the North gate. There are 330 flowers of 90 different varieties. They will be in bloom until early November and the garden will remain open until November 4th.

Cock’s Comb

cock's comb at shinrin park

Cock’s comb (plumed cockscomb, rooster comb, celosia) are tender perennials, but are grown as annuals in Shinrin Park. The park uses the space for other flora throughout the year. One of the things I love about Shinrin Park is the variety and versatility.

Having visited the cock’s comb in Shinrin park a couple of years ago, I had checked them off my bucket list. I thought “been there, done that, no need to go again”. But then I noticed on social media these past few weeks that the photos of the cock’s comb this year are much more impressive than they were in 2017.

A bit of research revealed that one of the reasons for that is because there are ten times the amount of cock’s comb this year than there was when I last saw them. Also, this year they have kochia in bloom beside them.

cock's comb at shinrin park

Kochia

kochia and cock's comb at shinrin park

The kochia in Shinrin park are actually quite big. When they are a smaller size they are reminiscent of troll’s hair! The ones in Shinrin Park are much bigger than in Omiya Hana no Oka. As far as I know, these two locations are the two main places to see Kochia in Saitama. Neither are as large as the famous display in Hitachinaka Seaside Park.

At the moment the kochia in Shinrin Park have 90% completed their transformation from green to pink. As their “kouyou” autumn change of color continues, they will turn into a blood red.

Cock’s comb and Kochia location

Both the cock’s comb and kochia are located near to the Pompoko Mountain which is just over a kilometer from the central gate and about 1.6 kilometers from the West gate. Due to the windy and hilly paths, it takes about 15 minutes on foot from the central gate and about 20 to 25 minutes from the west gate.

There are toilets, a water fountain and a large gasebo close to the flower fields and Pompoko mountain.

Halloween Decoration and Illumination

Halloween decoration shinrin park

When I was visiting today they were preparing the park for the annual Halloween Night in the Forest and “Forest and Light story” illumination which starts this Saturday, October 12th. More information about the event:

Shinrin Park information

Address:1920 Yamata, Namegawa, Hiki District, Saitama 355-0802
Phone:0493-57-2111
Hours:9.30 am to 5 pm during October
Cost:450 yen per adult, children can enter for free
Online:Official website

Cock’s Comb Access

The closest station is Shinrinkoen station on the Tobu Tojo Line. It is quite a distance from the park though, so getting a shuttle bus from the station is advised. There is also a bus that goes from the south exit of Kumagaya Station on the JR Takasaki line.

By car, parking is plentiful with car parks at each of the gates: North, South, West and Central. Parking costs 650 yen per day. At the Central exit there are a few privately owned car parks within walking distance of the entrance, that offer cheaper parking. They are priced between 100 and 500 yen according to their proximity to the park.

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4 comments on “Cock’s comb and Kochia

  1. Elle

    Thank you so much OzBurger. I accidentally published this before the post was actually finished. Yikes! Haven’t done that in years! But I’ve fixed it now and added the necessary text and information. Thank you so much for your comments, I really appreciate it.

    Reply
    1. L M N Post author

      Thanks a million Andy. Its a big’un ! Garden is already water logged and the worse has yet to come!!

      Reply

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