Among the many fascinatingly wicked Japanese myths, the jubokko is for sure my new favorite. According to the myth, on grounds where there has been much bloodshed, such as execution sites or battlefields, a special kind of tree grows. This tree is known as the jubokko. But what is so unique about this tree? The jubokko is a vampire tree that feeds on the blood and life-force of humans.
These demonized trees must feed off of humans in order to survive. But unfortunately the jubokko appears as a normal tree, there is no way of knowing what it really is… until it’s too late. Once a person walks too close to the tree it attacks, capturing the person with its branches and draining them of their blood.
There is one way to spot the jubokko for what it is but you have to get up close to it, which obviously means painful death for you. Either way, you can reveal a jubokko by cutting it, for it is said that a jubokko will bleed real human blood. Another problem is that is heals incredibly fast, so even if you were able to some how attack it from a distance it would simply bleed for a moment and then heal.
Oh but it doesn’t end there, this evil tree is also known to hide amongst other trees and bushes and it is able to alter the flora in the area. This makes it very easy for someone to get lost in the forest, which makes it easy for a jubokko to snatch them up. In some versions of the myth the jubokko can speak to other plants as well and are able to find its victims that way.
But it’s not all bad; in fact a jubokko can bring goodness to a lucky few. Any branch taken from a jubokko tree, with permission of course, is a powerful item that can be used to heal and purify almost anyone.
Well, I guess that’s something.