Mayor's Office

Press Release

Commemorative Tree Planting at Hermann Park Japanese Garden for Japan-U.S. Cherry Blossom Centennial
20 Cherry Blossom Trees to Be Planted As Part of Centennial Celebration of Tree Gift to US from Japan



Cherry Blossom CentennialOctober 18, 2012 -- Mayor Annise Parker and Consul-General of Japan, Jota Yamamoto will host a tree planting ceremony in the Japanese Garden at Hermann Park on Friday, October 19.  The ceremony will commemorate the Japan-U.S. Cherry Blossom Centennial.


In 1912, the People of Japan gave to the People of the United States 3,000 flowering cherry trees as a gift of friendship.  To mark the 100th anniversary of the gift, trees will be planted in over 36 cities across the U.S.  In the state of Texas both the Japanese Garden at Hermann Park in Houston and the Botanical Garden in Fort Worth will receive trees. 


“We are delighted that two cities in Texas have been chosen to receive trees," said Consul-General of Japan, Jota Yamamoto.  "In Houston this is also a wonderful opportunity to recognize with the city the 40th anniversary of the Houston-Chiba sister city relationship in addition to the centennial.”  In celebration of the centennial and the 40 years of warm relations between Houston and Chiba, Chiba City Mayor Toshihito Kumagai also intends to send a message of congratulations.


"For the past two decades, the Japanese Garden has served as a visible symbol of the friendship between Houston and Chiba City," said Houston Mayor Annise Parker.  "We are honored to acknowledge the lasting friendship this garden personifies, with its beautiful pathways, gardens and trees.


“The Japanese Garden holds a special place in Hermann Park and in the heart of the Houston Parks and Recreation Department,” said Joe Turner, director, Houston Parks and Recreation Department.  “It is a masterpiece of timeless Japanese landscape art unique in our area.  We appreciate the years of tender care and attention it has received from the Japanese community and the Houston community at large and look forward to reaffirming our friendship with Japan by planting the new trees.”


The ceremony will be held from 1:30 to 2:00 PM in the Japanese Garden.  In addition to Mayor Parker and Consul-General Yamamoto, representatives from the Houston Parks and Recreational Department, Houston Office of Protocol and International Affairs, Hermann Park Conservancy, Japan-America Society of Houston, Japan Business Association of Houston, Japanese American Citizens League and Japanese Association of Greater Houston will also attend.