Sun | Oct 24, 2021

If Plants Could Talk

Published:Monday | June 1, 2015 | 12:00 AMJody-Anne Lawrence
This beautiful lily creation was done by the wife of the new Japanese ambassador, Keiko Nakano, from the Ryuseiha School.
This variegated chrysanthemum arrangement was absolutely breathtaking.
Many are used to seeing this plant in red, but this purple anthurium caught the eyes of all who entered the PCJ Auditorium.
The Sogetsu School hit the mark with this beautiful arrangement that included orchids and this exotic rhipsalis cactus.
The Ikenobo school is not in Jamaica, but had this beautiful arrangement with torch ginger.
A beautiful Ikebana arrangement from the Sogetsu School – The branches of the weeping willow have never looked more alive.
This display from the O’Hara school would be the topic of discussion with every guest that enters your home.

The motto 'Friendship through Flowers' was perfectly exemplified in the annual Ikebana exhibition of the St Andrew chapter of Ikebana International at the Petroleum Corporation of Jamaica last weekend.

Ikebana is the Japanese art of flower arrangement, and each school has its own unique way of arranging plants that can be found in your backyard. Each arrangement tells a story and the plants are placed in a way that they complement each other.

There were five Ikebana schools on display, three of which were local - the Ichiyo, Ohara and Sogetsu. No two pieces looked alike. Each was beautiful and unique in its own way. Upon entering the auditorium, you were overwhelmed with beauty. Plants of different varieties, shapes and sizes, so beautiful you had to touch them to ensure they were real. This, coupled with the creativity of each student, had guests in awe.

Audrey Anderson, a member of the Ichiyo school, told Outlook how therapeutic the whole process is. She was inspired by seeing an Ikebana by Joy Jones a few years ago, and knew that she had to try it. Two of her works were showcased. She admitted that her skills were not honed overnight, but the school equipped her with skills to practise and she believes anyone can do it.

Beverly Chen, from the Ohara school and Ikebana International treasurer, expressed the same sentiment, adding that there are days when she starts to create a piece and cannot stop.

"Time just passes by and I don't even know it. Once you start, sometimes there is no stopping, even when you think you are tired," Chen said.

As guests went around the room admiring the pieces, they enjoyed wine from the wide variety provided by The Wine Shop. Some of the guests looked on proudly as their work was admired, helping guests with the name of some of the exotic fauna.