A Brief Introdution
The Eight Diagrams Field is located at the south foot of Jade Emperor Hill, and the highlights of the classic sense of Jade Emperor Feiyun(玉皇飞云, Clouds hurrying over Yuhuang hill). Jade Emperor Hill faces the West Lake in the north, is close to the Qiantang River in the south, connects the Nanping Mountain and the large Cizhu Mountain in the west. The hill is upstanding and towering. There are always clouds and mist winding around its top, so people name this scenic spot as "Clouds Scurrying over Jade Emperor Hill".
Hangzhou Eight Diagrams Field (杭州八卦田, Hangzhou Bagua Farmland) actually is an ancient rice field shaped a layout of eight diagrams, which used to be the land exclusively used by Emperors to encourage the development of agriculture.
Currently, there are seven types of crops planted in Eight Diagrams Rice Field. According to the historical study, there used to nine kinds of crops planted, and they were soybean(大豆), red bean(小豆), barley(大麦), wheat(小麦), rice(稻), millet (粟), glutinous rice(糯), broomcorn millet(黍), and ancient millet(稷). At present, the plantation area of the Eight Diagrams Field mainly includes surrounding area of core section, which is a shape of yin-yang taichi and the site of historic heritage, the central section and the exterior section.
History & Background
Anciently, It was called Baqiutian(八丘田, the rice field of eight hills), on which eight types of crops are planted. In four seasons, the eight sections planted with the different crops show different colors, and then the eight colors together in this large land may gives the visitors a great visual impact. At the center of the farmland, there is a round mound, which is the figure of taichi.
As a former place for the emperors to perform rituals to promote agriculture, the Eight Diagrams Field consists of eight fields of different cultures with the center, the symbol of Yin and Yang. The view from a height gives the scale natural setting.
The Eight Diagrams Field consists of 8 pieces of land, each used to grow a cereal or a different vegetable. These lands then take the shape of an octagon with its center in a wooded area landscaped as Yin and Yang. It was originally a field on which the emperors of the Song Dynasty came to perform rituals for crops. Indeed, they went there at least once a year for fertile land for agriculture and sericulture.
While visiting the site, visitors can observe cultivated fields surrounded by a wall with a temple nearby. But by continuing the ascent from the hill, one can admire the Eight Diagrams Field below and well to be aware of the magnitude and magnificence of this place.
Sunflower in the Field
Among the many places to view the sunflower in Hangzhou, Eight Diagrams Field (八卦田) is no doubt one of the best. In its 2 mu fields (1 mu=666.7 sq km), over one thousand sunflowers are in full bloom. The best time in a day to view the sunflower is in the morning. During the period, the sunflower tilts its flower head facing the sun, very interesting.
Adress: south foot of Jade Emperor Hill
Best time to visit：Mar. Apr. May. Jun. Jul. Sep. Oct. Nov.
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