Identification: Is this 'Ukon' or 'Gyoiko'?

Discussion in 'Ornamental Cherries' started by wcutler, Apr 19, 2019.

  1. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Kimiyo Kamimura wrote to @Douglas Justice to report finding trees on Ontario at 18th that seem to be 'Gyoiko'. We have had these on our map as 'Ukon'. There are a some other locations over the years that have been reported by scouts as 'Gyoiko' because of the green stripes, but they haven't succeeded (yet) in making their case. I took a lot of photos of these trees on Ontario today, so I will post a lot of them. I didn't notice anything different from one tree to the next, was just taking photos randomly, but then I decided I should try to keep flowers and trees together, so first I will post three of the trees in separate postings. Here is the group.
    20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_165505.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170549.jpg

    This is the middle of five trees, at 3456 Ontario. All these trees had some flower clusters that were fairly evenly cream-coloured, and some that had a lot of green.
    20190419_3456Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171136.jpg 20190419_3456Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170802.jpg 20190419_3456Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170836.jpg 20190419_3456Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170850.jpg 20190419_3456Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170903.jpg 20190419_3456Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171012.jpg 20190419_3456Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171039.jpg 20190419_3456Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171100.jpg
     
    Last edited: Apr 19, 2019
  2. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    20190419_3468Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171423.jpg 20190419_3468Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171217.jpg 20190419_3468Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171237.jpg 20190419_3468Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171257.jpg 20190419_3468Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171345.jpg
     
  3. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    20190419_3482Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171701.jpg 20190419_3482Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171520.jpg 20190419_3482Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171528.jpg 20190419_3482Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171538.jpg 20190419_3482Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171611.jpg 20190419_3482Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171555.jpg 20190419_3482Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_171602.jpg
     
  4. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Here are some other photos from this group, but I did not record which tree was which.
    20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_165537.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_165608.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_165619.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_165629.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_165716.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_165925.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170034.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170108.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170215.jpg 20190419_Ontario18th_Ukon-or-Gyoiko_Cutler_20190419_170250.jpg
     
  5. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Maybe I'll collect here some links to questionnable 'Ukon'/'Gyoiko' trees as I come across them in postings.
    @Junglekeeper posted two trees, one with essentially no stripes, one with stripes about a block away from the other, at 2795 West 37th Ave:
    Arbutus Ridge and Arbutus Ridge
    I posted three trees on Highbury at 31st:
    Dunbar-Southlands
    Lisa L posted the group at QE Park near 33rd:
    Riley Park
    The tree that first had us wondering, on Barclay Street; we thought it did not look entirely like the Stanley Park tree that we are calling 'Gyoiko'.
    West End / Stanley Park
    I posted these at 7th and Sasamat, in an Ornamental Cherries thread that went back and forth several times.
    Identification: - Asagi, Kizakura, Gyoiko and Ukon - Greenish white doubles, bronze leaves, mid-season
     
    Last edited: Apr 20, 2019
  6. yaletowner

    yaletowner Active Member 10 Years

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    Per the guidebook, here are the aspects I would look at:
    1. buds a) reddish or b) greenish
    2. calyx tube a) bulb like or b) tapered
    3. individual flowers a) 4.5 cm across or b) 5.0-5.5 cm across
    4. centre of blossom a) reddish or b) greenish
    I am inclined to say there might be both varieties there but without a ruler on the blossom, I think per #3 more information is needed. Could go either way with the data provided.
     
  7. Anne Eng

    Anne Eng Contributor 10 Years

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    I was just at 3482 Ontario/18th to look at these trees.

    I can't see how there could be any confusion that they're Ukon.

    Not with the grass-green stripes and the extra pink stripe visible in the fallen petals. Clearly, they are at one with the "green, white, and pink...coloured court-robes...of the women in the imperial court of ancient Japan..." (Japanese Flowering Cherries, Wybe Kuitert, p. 351-352. Gyoiko > "coloured court-robes").

    If I were a woman in the court of old Japan, I would certainly feel kinship with this cherry. Even if it contains a mutation that causes green (photosynthetic) tissue in the petals.

    20190420_Ontario18th_Gyoiko_Eng_4158.jpg 20190420_Ontario18th_Gyoiko_Eng_4159.jpg 20190420_Ontario18th_Gyoiko_Eng_4161.jpg 20190420_Ontario18th_Gyoiko_Eng_4163.jpg
     
  8. Anne Eng

    Anne Eng Contributor 10 Years

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    Yes, there can be much-a-muck confusion about Ukon.

    We must blame Steve Wysall. These are my photos from his Japan tour in 2014 to Hamarikyu Gardens in Tokyo. The "Ukon" there has blossoms that look a lot like those of the tree at 3482 Ontario/18.
    image.png thumbnail_image.png thumbnail_image (1).png


    I then went to check into current information and photos on Gyo-i-ko:

    https://www.botanic.jp/plants-ka/gyoiko_2.jpg
    gyoiko_2.jpg

    The Flowers of Konan Ward 新潟市
    The double-flowered cherry tree variety Gyoiko features unusual light green blossoms that bloom from late April to early May. Many people come out to see these blossoms.
    Three Gyoiko trees are planted on the banks of the Kitayama-ike Pond. Right beside them grow double-flowered cherry trees with pink blossoms, making the pale green petals of Gyoiko stand out even more. This rare sight draws many visitors who spend hours gazing at the blossoms and taking photos. Within a few days of opening up, the green cherry blossoms turn red at their center.

    https://www.kankou-shimane.com/en/wp-content/uploads/2014/03/IMG_0866.jpg

    Gyoiko_0866.jpg

    OK, the dark red centres, combined with the green striping and creamy background petal colour, does seem to better lend itself to courtly robe imitation. So maybe this is what Gyo-i-ko should look like, and the other, but a pale imitation, and is really a not-what-we're-used-to-seeing-but-nonetheless-Ukon.

    Even a cherry tree has its ups and downs.
     
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  9. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    I want to say something about internet photographs. You can't know what has been done to the photo.
    Here is a photo I took yesterday on 7th at Sasamat. Next to it is what I was able to do with just (cropping), darkening the photo, warming the colour, and boosting the highlights. I don't think my edited photo looks very different from the one in the posting just above that Anne found on the internet. My point is that we don't necessarily know what we're comparing our photos to, whether they have been enhanced. If our unenhanced photos seem like pale imitations, is that only because they're not edited?
    7thSaasamat_Ukon-Gyoiko1_Cutler_20210423_P1380396.JPG 7thSaasamat_Ukon-Gyoiko1_Cutler_20210423_P1380396-edited.JPG

    I'm not making an argument that supports my feelings here, because I think it has to be unlikely that a cultivar that's pretty rare in Japan would be lining streets in Vancouver. Maybe I have to ask whether, if we can edit our photos to look like the one Anne found, does that make the trees 'Gyoiko'?
     
    Last edited: Apr 25, 2021
  10. Janice Lin

    Janice Lin Member

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    Sunny went to take the photos on Ontario 18-19th street on 4/28. She didn't edit the photos, just brightened a little bit. So , those are the original color combinations.

    Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4166.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4235.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4172.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4174.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4182.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4185.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4189.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4227.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4224.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Sunny_20200428_IMG_4220.jpg
     
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  11. Janice Lin

    Janice Lin Member

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    I walked to see so called "Gyoiko tree" on Ontario street today, 5/7. They are almost finished , but under the shade area, I still can take some photos. I didn't do any edit, even the brightness.

    Gyoiko_ontario18th_Jancie_20210507_160149.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Jancie_20210507_155224.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Jancie_20210507_155754.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Jancie_20210507_155807.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Jancie_20210507_155837.jpg Gyoiko_ontario18th_Jancie_20210507_155849.jpg
     
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  12. Janice Lin

    Janice Lin Member

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    Here are Sunny's photos of Gyoiko at Stanly park last year. They look alike at both locations.

    Gyoiko_stanlypark_Sunny_201904_17582.jpg Gyoiko_stanlypark_Sunny_201904_23468.jpg Gyoiko_stanlypark_Sunny_201904_41131.jpg Gyoiko_stanlypark_Sunny_201904_66814.jpg Gyoiko_stanlypark_Sunny_2019_IMG_4235.jpg
     
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  13. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Regarding the Ontario St trees, I think it's important to not assume they are all the same. They may all be the same, but you're asking for the ID based on a selection of photos, when we can't determine how many trees have what appearance. Do we have a block of whatever it is, or did one or two of the maybe 'Gyoiko' get mixed in with what we'd consider 'Ukon' and would there be a noticeable distinction?

    I did post photos of individual trees at the start of this thread. It looks to me like the trees at 3456 and 3482 are the only ones that had some outer petals recurved (curved to the back) "resulting in a not-so beautiful flower shape", as mentioned by Wybe Kuitert in Japanese Flowering Cherries (Timber Press, 1999, p 351-352). The only indication of that in the recent photos is Sunny's last photo in posting #10. Is that one of those two trees? Are those photos representative of those trees? There obviously are some almost white flowers in the mix - are there flowers that look like that on every tree? Are they all on the same branch?

    @Douglas Justice did call these ones on Ontario 'Gyoiko' in his video at (2) UBC Cherry Blossom Tree Talks and Walks - YouTube, but I'd still want to know if they're all the same. He also mentioned there being four distinct cultivars, but the last written word we have on that is from @eteinindia at Identification: - Asagi, Kizakura, Gyoiko and Ukon - Greenish white doubles, bronze leaves, mid-season, in which she said in 2010 "Nowadays Asagi-akura, Kizakura and Kogane-zakura are supposed to be another name of Ukon. So only 2 official cultivars exist for yellow and green cherry. Gyoiko is supposed to be late blooming." That's been the basis of what's in our book, and what's on our map. If we're going back to four cultivars, I'd call at least some of the ones on Ontario 'Kizakura'.

    On the other hand, if the flowers shown at Gyoiko – the Unique Yellow-Green Cherry Blossoms that are Hard to Spot | mono.coto Japan (monocotojapan.com) are 'Gyoiko', then a lot of our trees are that cultivar.
    Here is a video from this year in Victoria of four small unattractive trees someone has identified as 'Gyoiko', with some kool-aid colours that were mentioned on our forums one year. (2) [4K] Victoria BC Today—S26_2021_April_21_ The unique yellow-green cherry (Gyoiko) and pink maple... - YouTube.
    And here are a few pages that weren't around when we last hashed this out.
    Prunus 'Gyoiko' — Plinth et al
    Prunus Gyoiko japanese flowering cherry tree for sale (pippintrees.co.uk)
    Prunus ‘Gyoiko’ – Harley Nursery
    Gyoiko, green cherry flower – Nagoya Like It Is (wordpress.com)
     
  14. eteinindia

    eteinindia Active Member VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Wendy, you can't call it "ki-zakura". Ki-zakura in Chinese character is 黄桜. "Ki" means yellow. You can't call not yellow cherry "Ki-zakura". Ukon is more Ki-zakura.
    Then what you should call them? I don't know the answer. They are Ukon trees with Gyoiko flowers.
    Even in Japan Gyoiko and Ukon are big problems. Recently my Japanese friend sent me an e-mail which said she saw Gyoiko for the first time. it was with a picture of yellow cherry with only a few green lines. She said it had a name plate of Gyoiko. We were together in Vancouver and I took her cherry tours in vancouver and in Japan. I showed Ukon in Vancouver but not Gyoiko yet.
    I have seen yellow cherries with name plates of Gyoiko in Matsumae, Hokkaido. I had a chance to talk with a city officer who were taking care of Cherries. He said they grafted the branches of a real Gyoiko flower tree but all of them became Ukon.
    When I visited Yuki Farm of Japan Flower Association two years ago, I had a chance to talk with Mr. Hideaki Tanaka who is a co-author of the big book, "Cherries in Japan, new edition" .
    He said flowers of Ukon and Gyoiko varies yellow, yellow with green stripes, white with green stripes and small green flowers.
    Gyoiko first appeared in the literature in Edo period. At that time Gyoiko meaned the yellow flower with green lines.
    Nowadays people think Gyoiko must has small green flowers but Ukons and Gyoikos are not sorted out even between the specialists. Mr. Toshio Katsuki, the author of Gakken Book and working at Forest Research Institute, and co-workers made DNA analysis of 1479 cherry trees of Tama Forest Research Center, National Institure of Genetics in Mishima and Shinjuku Gyoen Park in 2014. They used 17 DNA Marker (SSR) and made them 215 cultivars. But they can't find the difference between them. They said Gyoiko and Ukon has only tiny difference of very few DNAs out of millions of DNA.
    But now I think Gyoiko and Ukon has the same DNAs but in Gyoiko only a few DNAs didn't work properly.

    Now I have to go out. So I'll write more later.
     
  15. Janice Lin

    Janice Lin Member

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    Wendy , thanks for the detailed informatiaon. Yes, I took the photos of the two tress you mentioned only, because the others are either too high or withered already. I will start to observe next year. But as you and Mariko said Gyoiko and Ukon may be too complicated to be identified.
     
  16. eteinindia

    eteinindia Active Member VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Today I posted some pictures of Gyoiko, Ukon and something between them on the thread of "Cherries in Japan" #327 & #329.
    Please see them.
    Thank you!!
     
    Last edited by a moderator: May 20, 2021
  17. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    What is interesting to me is that not only can the clone look more like one or the other, but they would be examined at the same time, maybe in the same conditions.
     
  18. eteinindia

    eteinindia Active Member VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Once I saw a TV program about DNA. There are very famous identical twin actresses in Japan. They took parts in Asa-dora twice.
    They look like each other very much. When I see one of them, I wonder which one it is. But when I see them together I can recognize them easily. They look like each other but they aren't identical.
    They must have identical DNAs but they are not the same. The program said not all the DNAs working all the time. Some are just covered and not working sometimes.
    Most of identical twins look like each other when they are young, but when they grow old and get married, most of them start different style of life, then the difference becomes larger.
    I think those kind of things can occur in Ukon sometimes. Ukon's DNAs which decide the flower colours are rather less and week, I believe. So it has unique yellowy color as cherries. Sometimes more DNAs stop working, then it lost the color of the flowers and has green flowers, the color of leaves. I think it is Gyoiko. It didn't lost DNAs so sometimes it can have Ukon flowers again.
    But this is only my theory. Still the member of Cherry society of Japan now are examining Ukon, Gyoiko and other new yellow cherries.
    So no need to decide in short time now and examine these trees for several years, then things might become more clear.
     
  19. wcutler

    wcutler Esteemed Contributor Forums Moderator VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Mariko, I hope they will tell you as soon as they figure it out, and you can pass the info on to us.
     
  20. eteinindia

    eteinindia Active Member VCBF Cherry Scout 10 Years

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    Wendy, it will take long time. Because they are examining themselves now. But I don't think they will discuss about Ukon and Gyoiko in short future.
    There is no association all the cherry specialists belonged to and there are so many things they are not agreed with.
    Also not all the specialists have accepted the simplified analysis of DNAs yet.
     

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