Land of Flowers

The Land of Flowers (華の国, Hana no Kuni) is a small country mentioned in Shikamaru Shinden. The country’s soil has special qualities that make it incredibly fertile, perfect for growing crops and other plants: flowers are in fact the country’s main export, hence its name.

The neighbouring Land of Earth, whose terrain does not allow much agriculture, relies heavily on Flowers in order to feed its people, trading its minerals for Flowers’ crops. Several generations ago, during a particularly harsh winter, the Land of Earth found itself short of food and ended its treaty with the Land of Flowers. Although Flowers would end up losing some territory to the Land of Earth in the resulting conflict, they were saved from complete annexation by the Land of Lightning. Flowers and Lightning have been allied ever since.

Several years after the end of the Fourth Shinobi World War, the Earth daimyō, Danjō, begins making plans to invade the Land of Flowers. Most onlookers interpret Danjō’s reason as being mere whim, that he’s decided to stop trading with a country he could just as easily conquer. Such an invasion would place Earth’s Iwagakure in opposition to Lightning’s Kumogakure, thus breaking the Shinobi Union that has created peace throughout the region. Flowers’ daimyō, a young boy who took office only a few months earlier following the death of his father, contemplates preemptively surrendering to the Land of Earth in order to avert war and to ensure his people’s survival. Before he can act, news of the planned invasion reaches Konohagakure.

Konoha’s Seventh Hokage, as well as the Hokage’s adviser, Shikamaru Nara, oppose the invasion and encourage Iwa’s Fourth Tsuchikage not to support Danjō’s plans. When this fails, they appeal to the Land of Fire’s daimyō, Ikkyū Madoka, who decides to offer some of his own country’s territory to the Land of Earth as an alternative to invading Flowers. Such a transfer of lands would require the approval of all surrounding countries, something Shikamaru arranges a Continental Summit to decide. Flowers’ daimyō decides to leave his country’s fate up to the Summit’s assembly, knowing full-well that if a majority of countries deny Ikkyū’s proposed land transfer, then Danjō’s invasion will be unavoidable.

Flowers’ daimyō declines to speak at the Summit on his country’s behalf, fearful that his youth would make Flowers appear weak and consequently turn the majority against his country. Although the Summit does initially seem open to allowing Danjō’s invasion to occur, the Hokage gives an impassioned speech that turns most attendees against it. The land transfer is ultimately approved, thus sparing the Land of Flowers. Flowers’ daimyō visits Konoha a week after the Summit in order to personally thank the Hokage and Shikamaru; he gifts both of them hundreds of flowers. The Summit significantly raises the Land of Flowers’ profile, necessitating that its daimyō be escorted back to his country by Team 10, to protect him from any opportunistic forces.

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