Warning: for my readers who experience Trypophobia (fear of clusters of holes or bumps) you might want to stop reading. See you tomorrow! 

At the Tsurugaoka Hachiman-gu Shrine in Kamakura, there are large lotus plants growing in the ponds. 

It wasn’t until I lived in Japan that I understood the complete lifecycle of the lotus plant. Before I lived in Japan, I would have referred to these plants as lily pads. Clearly, they aren’t. Because a lily pad leaf sits on the water and the lotus plant leaves rise above the water. 

The ponds were lovely. 

I enjoyed walked around the ponds and as I did, I noticed most of the flowers had already bloomed. Only a couple remained. 

More prominent are the lotus seed pods. Once you notice them, you can’t stop seeing them. 

A couple up close pictures. They are everywhere! 

In the U.S., we are used to seeing lotus seed pods dried. Often they are placed in a fall flower arrangement. 

Rarely do we see the actual lotus root available for purchase in the produce section of the grocery store. 

Or added to your Sushi bento box. 

Here is a visual of the lotus plant lifecycle. 

I hope you feel complete now that you are more familiar with the lifecycle of the lotus plant. If the lotus seed pod pictures bother you, you might have trypophobia.