七段花 Shichidanka , or Hydrangea serrata f. prolifera, are at their best now at Mt. Rokko. They belong to "mountain hydrangeas".
In Hydrangea macrophylla native to Japan, I wrote about hydrangeas which was introduced to Europe in Flora Japonica by Siebold. Remember? Shichidanka is one of them.
"Hydrangea stellate" named by Siebold is unresolved and is thought synonymous with Hydrangea serrata f. prolifera, or Shichidanka.
Shichidanka had not been really seen anywhere until it was discovered in the Rokko Mountains in 1959 after about 130 years of Siebold’s Flora Japonica. The discovered Shichidanka has grown multiplied by planting cuttings. (Shichidanka in Japanese)
They are modest-looking with small flowers on the slim stems. When blooming in mass, the sight is really something. The ground was covered by the soft purple or blue flowers and lush green leaves.
I walked in the woods under the overcast right after three consecutive rainy days after long hot and dry days. I was welcomed by the rejuvenated nature.
These red fruits of ウスラヒョウタンボク, Lonicera cerasina Maxim、are lovely to see but poisonous to eat.
This is a maple seed after flower. It looks like wings of dragonfly or propeller. The maple seed falls slowly in a spiral.
Hase-ike Pond is always magically enchanting.
Climbing hydrangeas are over.
At Mt. Rokko, different varieties of hydrangeas bloom one after another from mid-June to mid-July, later than other places on the lower altitude.
Shichidanka is in full bloom now.