Chrysanthemum, 菊花, The Emblematic Fall Flower


Chrysanthemum is an emblem of fall, blooming in the cold days of late autumn and early winter when other flowers have faded from the landscape. Chrysanthemum represents nobility and elegance, and like a hermit exhibiting perseverance and humility in the face of hardship, the combination of beauty, strength, and bearing that chrysanthemum displays are considered hallmarks of good character by the pillars of traditional China. Celebrated poet Tao Yuanming [365-427] in his poem “Drinking Wine” told the tale of a high official who had retired to enjoying life in the countryside, free of attachment to fame and status. The poem contains the line, “As modest and undisturbed as chrysanthemum.” Inherently, the properties of the chrysanthemum flower, Ju Hua in Chinese herbal medicine, enter the Liver and Lung channels with its cool nature and pungent, sweet, bitter flavors. The effect neutralizes toxin and benefits the eyes. Overall, enjoyed as a tea beverage, chrysanthemum flower helps to keep the body fresh and light.

Traditional Asian Art & Ju Hua from my garden. Collage by E.C.O.M.A.

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