Why do the Japanese believe that pine trees, bamboos, plum trees, cranes, and tortoises are symbols of happiness and good luck?
The idea of cherishing pine trees, bamboos and plum trees as symbols of happiness and good luck originally came from China.
Pine trees and bamboos maintain their green leaves even in the severest cold of winter, and plum blossoms bloom long before spring starts.
Therefore, the Chinese regarded them as symbols of nobleness, integrity, and purity.
The Japanese imported this idea from China in the Nara period, around the eighth centurv.
Cranes and tortoises are considered blessed animals because the former have graceful figures and the latter live a long time.
There is a saying that goes "Cranes live for a thousand years, and tortoises for ten thousand years.