The hydrangea is known in Japanese as the ajisai. Of its over 70 species, most of them are native to China, Korea, and Japan.
It is hydrangea season in Japan now. On a weekend visit to the seaside town of Shimoda, on the Izu Peninsula in Shizuoka prefecture, there was a profusion of hydrangeas lining the town’s lanes and coloring its temple grounds, parks, and gardens.
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