Isa Marsh

Summer Flowers in the Isanuma area of Kawagoe. At Isa Marsh and the Isa marsh East Bank Flower Garden or Isanuma Tōgan Hanabatake in Japanese.

Isa Marsh

Isa Marsh Kawagoe

Isanuma is an area in Kawagoe. Numa means marsh or swamp. The area is named after the Isa marsh. The marsh is particularly well known and beloved by avid bird watchers. I am in the area a lot and there are always dozens of bird photographers around the marsh. To the West of the marsh is the Isanuma Park which is quite popular with locals for summer fun and for hanami picnicking under the cherry blossoms.

Ancient Lotus

Isanuma Isa marsh kawagoe

At the North of the marsh itself is a lotus pond. From about mid June until the end of July you can see ancient lotus in bloom. They say the best time to visit them is early morning, because they open up when the weather is cooler. Even in the afternoon today (July 16th) quite a few were open because the temperatures were cooler than normal.

Ancient lotus kawagoe

Isa Marsh East Bank Flower Garden

On the east side of the marsh there is a community flower garden. It isn’t particularly big, but it is done very well. I visited specifically to see the sunflowers, but it looks like they were only planted very recently. If you’ve read my other posts about sunflowers you’ll know the large sunflower fields aren’t opening to the public this year. So community fields / gardens are the way to go.

Sunflowers

Sunflower Isanuma kawagoe August 4th
Photo taken on August 4th (2.5 weeks after writing this article!)

What I love about this flower garden is that there is a path among the sunflowers. Most of the community fields you can actually walk into the field even if there isn’t a path; so long as you take due care not to damage the flowers. However, as most of them are as natural as natural can be you do have to be weary of snakes. In Isanuma the grass is kept short on the paths so you can see if a snake is passing. Do take care of the thousands of frogs that live in these fields though, they are not as easy to see.

As far as I know this community flower garden doesn’t have an official website. I usually get my information on the Kawagoe City website, but they haven’t updated information for the flower garden for 2020. They do have I can only guess that it’ll be at least another week until these sunflowers start to bloom. And I imagine prime viewing will probably be the first two weeks in August. August 4th 2020: I visited again today and the sunflowers were in bloom, but the vast majority of them were in very bad condition. Too much rain? Too much sun!?

Looking for sunflowers already in bloom in the area? In neighboring Kawajima town, about a 20 minute drive away, the sunflowers are already in full bloom. Read more…

Cosmos

cosmos kawagoe

Cosmos usually bloom around the end of September and October in Saitama. But the ones at Isanuma East Bank Flower Garden look set to bloom sooner rather than later this year. I’ve noticed on Instagram that people have been posting cosmos photos these past couple of weeks. It maybe that due to the cooler than normal weather they are blooming prematurely.

cosmos kawagoe isa marsh

There was ONE early purple bloomer among the fresh green stalks at the east bank flower garden today. And the one beside it looks ready to pop too! There was also a cluster of white ones in another field.

sulfur cosmos Isa marsh east bank flower garden

August 4th 2020: on a subsequent visit (today August 4th) the sulfur cosmos were in bloom. And so beautiful, particularly the red tinged ones. There were some workers at the site today and they were scything some of the sulfur cosmos though. Unfortunately, I don’t know why and if they planned to take them all.

Hydrangea

Isa marsh east bank flower garden hydrangea

The hydrangea were still in bloom today. They are past their prime – well past it – but they still looked very picturesque. Particularly against the new green and with the picturesque fence and in the background.

Other blooms

There is a lovely little seating area along the river with a few other blooms and lots of butterflies as well as the inhabitant frogs! Among the flowers in bloom is what I believe to be what they call false sunflowers! Please correct me if I am wrong!

Visiting during the Coronavirus Outbreak

I was very impressed that at the marsh, although it is outdoors, absolutely everybody was wearing a mask. It was a good bit cooler than normal today, which meant you could wear one comfortably. However, exactly because it was cooler there were a lot more visitors than usual. It was hard to maintain social distancing on the boardwalk with so many people coming and going.

As the hydrangea are past their prime and the other flowers haven’t started blooming yet, there was nobody at all at the East Coast Flower Garden. Just me and thousands of gorgeous little frogs. However, as always, there were dozens of photographers along the marsh’s east flank, a stone’s throw away so to speak!

Access Isa Marsh / Flower Garden

Isa marsh and flower garden map

There is a large car park right on the south end of the flower garden by the sunflowers. You can walk to the marsh from there or move your car to the Isa Marsh North end car park. There is also parking on the West side by the Isanuma Adventure playground.

4 Comments

  1. Lynda this are looks beautiful. Awesome story you have too, living in Japan for 12 years. My wife taught English in Hiroshima for 1 year. Loved it. I hope to see Japan soon, as soon as travel opens up.

    1. Author

      Hi Ryan, thank you so much for commenting and for sharing my tweet. I love so much of Japan (its not without its challenges of course), but particularly the beauty. So much to do and see too. I really hope you get to see it yourself someday.

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