Higanbana (彼岸花), Red spider lily or Red magic lily (Lycoris radiata), originally from China, Korea and Nepal, it was introduced into Japan and from there to the United States and elsewhere,usually bloom near cemeteries around the autumnal equinox and are described in Chinese and Japanese translations of the Lotus Sutra as ominous flowers that grow in Diyu (also known as Hell), or Huángquán or Jigoku (japanese) and guide the dead into the next reincarnation. It flowers in the late summer or autumn, often in response to heavy rainfall. The common name hurricane lily refers to this characteristic, as do other common names, such as resurrection lily.
Some legends have it that when you see someone that you may never meet again, these flowers would bloom along the path. Perhaps because of these sorrowful legends, Japanese people often used these flowers in funerals. The popular Japanese name Higanbana literally means higan (the other or that shore of Sanzu River) flower, decorate and enjoyable, flower of afterlife in gokuraku jyōdo.
It’s also referred to as manjusaka, based on an old Chinese legend about two elves: Manju guarded the flowers and Saka the leaves, but they could never meet, because the plant never bears flowers and leaves at the same time. They were curious about each other, so they defied the gods’ instructions and arranged a meeting. The gods promptly punished them, as gods are wont to do, and separated them for all eternity.To this day, the red lily is associated with loss, longing, abandonment and lost memories in hanakotoba (花言葉), the language of flowers.The flower has many other names, but many of them are no longer used.
- some not used in Japan anymore as far as It`s known, chicken blood plant (鶏血草, keiketsusō), due to its colour.
- shibitobana (死人花), flower of the dead, because it blooms while you visit your ancestors’ graves.
- yūreibana (幽霊花), because the flower looks like a ghost.