The Symbolism of Japanese Hydrangea

In my first Hiro Hattori / Shinobi Mystery, Claws of the Cat, I mention an arrangement of hydrangea blossoms in the room where the murder occurred. Flowers have great importance in Japanese culture. The art of ikebana, or traditional flower arranging, developed hundreds of years ago and was considered an appropriate art for both men and women–many samurai studied ikebana as well as swordsmanship. In Japan, flowers have long been displayed in seasonal contexts. Certain flowers are considered “appropriate” for, symbolic of, and associated with, specific times of year. Additionally, flowers carry traditional meanings that are understood by students of ikebana and Japanese culture. Hydrangea

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