The Izu peninsula is a large mountainous peninsula with indented coasts to the west of Tokyo on the Pacific coast of the island of Honshū, Japan. The eponymous Izu Province, Izu peninsula is now a part of Shizuoka Prefecture; the peninsula has an area of 1,421.24 km² and its estimated population in 2005 was 473,942 people. The populated areas lie on the north and east. Tectonically, the Izu peninsula results from the Philippine Sea Plate colliding with the Okhotsk Plate at the Nankai Trough; the Philippine Sea Plate, the Amurian Plate, the Okhotsk Plate meet at Mount Fuji, a triple junction. The peninsula itself lies on the Philippine Sea Plate; the southern portion of the peninsula is composed of breccia, the central and northern portions consist of numerous eroded volcanoes. The Amagi Mountain Range dominates the center of the peninsula with Mount Amagi and Mount Atami in the east and Mount Daruma in the west, with the eastern and western portions of the range extending underwater into Sagami Bay and Suruga Bay.
The peninsula's major river, the Kano River in the north, flows through a graben valley created by plate tectonics. As a result of its underlying geology, the peninsula is prone to frequent earthquake swarms and tsunamis, it abounds in hot springs. All of Izu Peninsula is within Shizuoka Prefecture, it is divided administratively into 8 cities and 5 towns: Atami Itō Izu Izunokuni Mishima Shimoda Kamo District – Higashiizu Kamo District – Kawazu Kamo District – Matsuzaki Kamo District – Minamiizu Kamo District – Nishiizu A popular resort region for tourists from the Kantō region, the Izu peninsula is known for onsen hot spring resorts in Atami, Itō. The peninsula is a part of Fuji-Hakone-Izu National Park; the area is popular for sea bathing, surfing and motorcycle touring. Aside from tourism and fishing are the mainstays of the local economy. Izu is one of the biggest producers of wasabi in Japan, the local cuisine offers dishes flavored with wasabi; these industries are not lucrative enough to prevent a heavy loss of population to Greater Tokyo and Shizuoka among the young.
The northern parts of Izu peninsula is accessible from Tokyo and points west via the Tōkaidō Shinkansen, which has stations in both Atami in the northeast and Mishima in the northwest. JR Itō Line and the Izu Kyūkō Line provides service along the east coast of the peninsula to Shimoda, however given the lack of population, these services are less regular. Central Izu is served by the Sunzu Line as far as Shuzenji; the west coast of the peninsula is less developed, has no train service. Izu Peninsula is served by numerous expressways. By car, it is 103.3 km from the Yōga Interchange on the Tokyo end of the Tōmei Expressway to Numazu. To get to the eastern side, a branch at Atsugi leads to the Odawara-Atsugi Road, which continues past Odawara to Yugawara and Shimoda. Izu Peninsula is served by Japan National Route 135, Japan National Route 136, Japan National Route 414. Izu offers two scenic roads, called "Izu Skyline" and "Western Izu Skyline" (西伊豆スカイライン）that offer beautiful views on nature and Mt. Fuji.
Both skyline roads are favorite spots of motorcycle enthusiasts. The Odakyu Electric Railway runs local bus services from Odawara and Hakone, there is an extensive but infrequent internal bus network. Izu Peninsula Geopark Izu Peninsula - Encyclopædia Britannica Online Eastern Area - Shizuoka Guide "Izu Peninsula". - Japan National Tourist Organization
Mount Fuji, located on Honshū, is the highest volcano in Japan at 3,776.24 m, 2nd-highest peak of an island in Asia, 7th-highest peak of an island in the world. It is a dormant stratovolcano that last erupted in 1707–1708. Mount Fuji lies about 100 kilometers south-west of Tokyo, can be seen from there on a clear day. Mount Fuji's exceptionally symmetrical cone, snow-capped for about 5 months a year, is a well-known symbol of Japan and it is depicted in art and photographs, as well as visited by sightseers and climbers. Mount Fuji is one of Japan's "Three Holy Mountains" along with Mount Haku, it is a Special Place of Scenic Beauty and one of Japan's Historic Sites. It was added to the World Heritage List as a Cultural Site on June 22, 2013. According to UNESCO, Mount Fuji has "inspired artists and poets and been the object of pilgrimage for centuries". UNESCO recognizes 25 sites of cultural interest within the Mount Fuji locality; these 25 locations include the mountain and the Shinto shrine, Fujisan Hongū Sengen Taisha, as well as the Buddhist Taisekiji Head Temple founded in 1290 immortalized by Japanese ukiyo-e artist Katsushika Hokusai.
The current kanji for Mount Fuji, 富 and 士, mean "wealth" or "abundant" and "a man of status" respectively. However, the name predates kanji, these characters are ateji, meaning that they were selected because their pronunciations match the syllables of the name but do not carry a meaning related to the mountain; the origin of the name Fuji is unclear, having no recording of it being first called by this name. A text of the 9th century, Tale of the Bamboo Cutter, says that the name came from "immortal" and from the image of abundant soldiers ascending the slopes of the mountain. An early folk etymology claims that Fuji came from 不二, meaning without nonpareil. Another claims. A Japanese classical scholar in the Edo era, Hirata Atsutane, speculated that the name is from a word meaning, "a mountain standing up shapely as an ear of a rice plant". A British missionary Bob Chiggleson argued that the name is from the Ainu word for "fire" of the fire deity, denied by a Japanese linguist Kyōsuke Kindaichi on the grounds of phonetic development.
It is pointed out that huchi means an "old woman" and ape is the word for "fire", ape huchi kamuy being the fire deity. Research on the distribution of place names that include fuji as a part suggest the origin of the word fuji is in the Yamato language rather than Ainu. A Japanese toponymist Kanji Kagami argued that the name has the same root as wisteria and rainbow, came from its "long well-shaped slope". Modern linguist Alexander Vovin proposes an alternative hypothesis based on Old Japanese reading /puⁿzi/: the word may have been borrowed from Eastern Old Japanese 火主 meaning'fire master', see wikt:富士#Etymology 2. In English, the mountain is known as Mount Fuji; some sources refer to it as "Fuji-san", "Fujiyama" or, redundantly, "Mt. Fujiyama". Japanese speakers refer to the mountain as "Fuji-san"; this "san" is not the honorific suffix used with people's names, such as Watanabe-san, but the Sino-Japanese reading of the character yama used in Sino-Japanese compounds. In Nihon-shiki and Kunrei-shiki romanization, the name is transliterated as Huzi.
Other Japanese names for Mount Fuji, which have become obsolete or poetic, include Fuji-no-Yama, Fuji-no-Takane, Fuyō-hō, Fugaku, created by combining the first character of 富士, 岳, mountain. In Shinto mythology, Kuninotokotachi is one of the two gods born from "something like a reed that arose from the soil" when the earth was chaotic. According to the Nihon Shoki, Konohanasakuya-hime, wife of Ninigi, is the goddess of Mount Fuji, where Fujisan Hongū Sengen Taisha is dedicated for her. Mount Fuji is an attractive volcanic cone and a frequent subject of Japanese art after 1600, when Edo became the capital and people saw the mountain while traveling on the Tōkaidō road; the mountain is mentioned in Japanese literature throughout the ages and is the subject of many poems. One of the modern artists who depicted Fuji in all her works was Tamako Kataoka, it is thought. The summit has been thought of as sacred since ancient times and was forbidden to women until the Meiji Era in the late 1860s. Ancient samurai used the base of the mountain as a remote training area, near the present-day town of Gotemba.
The shōgun Minamoto. Founded by Nikko Shonin in 1290 on the lower slopes of Mount Fuji in Shizuoka Prefecture is the Taiseki-ji temple complex, the central base headquarters of Nichiren Shōshū Buddhism, visited by thousands of westerners and Asian believers from neighbouring countries each year who go on varying Tozan pilgrimages; the first ascent by a foreigner was by Sir Rutherford Alcock in September 1868, from the foot of the mountain to the top in eight hours and three hours for the descent. Alcock's brief narrative in The Capital of the Tycoon was the first disseminated description of the mountain in the West. Lady Fanny Parkes, the wife of British ambassador Sir Harry Parkes, was the first non-Japanese woman to ascend Mount Fuji in 1869. Photographer Felix Beato climbed M
Numazu is a city located in eastern Shizuoka Prefecture, Japan. The city, which covers an area of 186.96 square kilometres, had an estimated population in March 2018 of 191,599, giving a population density of 1,025 persons per km2. Numazu is at the northern end of the Izu Peninsula, a leisure destination known for its numerous hot springs. Mount Fuji, Japan's tallest mountain, may be seen from Numazu on clear days. Numazu is located 130 kilometres west of Tokyo and is on the Tōkaidō Main Line, the main railway line from Osaka to Tokyo. Warmed by the Kuroshio Current, the area enjoys a warm maritime climate with hot, humid summers and mild, cool winters; the Kano River runs through the middle of the city. Mishima Fuji Izu Izunokuni Shimizu Nagaizumi Kannami Numazu is an ancient settlement, mentioned in Nara period records as the original provincial capital of Suruga Province before the separation of Izu Province from Suruga in 680, subsequent transfer of the provincial capital to the banks of the Abe River in what is now Shizuoka city.
During the early part of the Tokugawa shogunate, Numazu was ruled as part of Odawara Domain, but with the construction of Numazu Castle in 1777, it became the separate Numazu Domain. Numazu prospered in the Edo period from its location on the Tōkaidō, with Numazu-juku and Hara-juku as two of the 53 post stations. After the Meiji Restoration, Numazu Station was opened on the Tōkaidō Main Line on February 1, 1889. During the cadastral reform of the early Meiji period in 1889, the area was reorganized into Numazu Town within Suntō District, Shizuoka From its seaside location, Numazu gained a reputation as a health resort, further enhanced by its selection as the location of an imperial villa built for Emperor Meiji in 1893; the area become popular with other members of the nobility and writers. Numazu town expanded in 1923 by merger with Yanagihara village, becoming Numazu City on July 1, 1923. Central Numazu was destroyed by a fire in 1926. In 1944, the city further expanded through merger with neighboring Katahama, Kanaoka and Shizuura villages.
The city was a target for American air raids in World War II, was destroyed by bombing on July 17, 1945. In 1955, the villages of Ashitaka, Oohira and Nishiura merged with Numazu, in 1968 Hara Town merged with Numazu. In the year 2000, Numazu was designated a Special City by the central government. In April 2005, the village of Heda was merged into Numazu. In 2007, Numazu hosted the 29th WorldSkills International Championship. Numazu is an industrial city and regional financial center, its port is a major center of Shizuoka prefecture's fishery industry. Numazu produces more dried Japanese horse mackerel than any other region in Japan; the city accounts for about half of Japan's total production. Agriculture is dominated by production of mandarin oranges and green tea, with Brussels sprouts, dairy products and rice as secondary products. Numazu is the location of the head office of Suruga Bank, Shizuoka Chuo Bank and Numazu Shinkin Bank. Numazu has 26 public and one private elementary school, 17 public middle schools, one public and one private combined middle school/high school and five public and six private high schools.
In additional there are three special education schools in Numazu. JR Central: Tōkaidō Main Line Numazu–Katahama–Hara JR Central: Gotemba Line Numazu–Ōoka Tomei Expressway Shin-Tōmei Expressway Izu-Jūkan Expressway Japan National Route 1 Japan National Route 246 Japan National Route 414 Numazu is a gateway to Mount Fuji and Izu Peninsula, which are major tourist attractions; the harbour area has seafood restaurants and features an anti-tsunami barrier with an observation floor on top that offers a panoramic view of the city and the surrounding area. There is a shopping street not too far from the train station. Numazu has the longest coastline of any municipality in the prefecture; the Senbonhama seaside is considered one of the best places to view Osezaki, Nihondaira, or the southern Japan Alps against the background of Sembonmatsubara and Mount Fuji. Three aquariums are located in Numazu, Mito Sea Paradise, Awashima Marine Park and Numazu Deepblue Aquarium. – Kalamazoo, United States – Yueyang, China – Ueda, Japan Tomita Tsunejirō – the earliest disciple of judo Yasushi Inoue – novelist Nobutaka Machimura – politician Shinji Ono – professional soccer player Masakuni Yamamoto – professional soccer player Kento Sugiyama – professional baseball player Kyoko Iwasaki – Olympic medalist swimmer Koji Murofushi – Olympic medalist in hammer-throw Miu Hirano – Table Tennis player Yamada Nagamasa – Sengoku period merchant-adventurer Norio Ohga – former CEO of Sony Tomoyoshi Murayama – artist and playwright Masato Harada – movie director Ulka Sasaki — mixed martial artist Numazu has gained prominence as a city featured in the anime'Love Live!
Sunshine!!'. As such, many tourists come to Numazu purely for the anime. Official website Numazu City official website Travel guide to Numazu for tourists and foreign residents
Districts of Japan
The district is today a geographical and statistical unit comprising one or several rural municipalities in Japan. It was used as an administrative unit in Japan in antiquity and between 1878 and 1921 and was equivalent to the county of the United States, ranking at the level below prefecture and above town or village, same as city; the district was called kōri and has ancient roots in Japan. Although the Nihon Shoki says they were established during the Taika Reforms, kōri was written 評, it was not until the Taihō Code that kōri came to be written as 郡. Under the Taihō Code, the administrative unit of province was above district, the village was below; as the power of the central government decayed over the centuries, the provinces and districts, although never formally abolished and still connected to administrative positions handed out by the Imperial court lost their relevance as administrative units and were superseded by a hierarchy of feudal holdings. In the Edo period, the primary subdivisions were the shogunate cities, governed by urban administrators, the shogunate domain, major holdings, there was a number of minor territories such as spiritual holdings.
For this reason alone, they were impractical as geographical units, in addition, Edo period feudalism was tied to the nominal income of a territory, not the territory itself, so the shogunate could and did redistribute territories between domains, their borders were subject to change if in some places holdings remained unchanged for centuries. Provinces and districts remained the most important geographical frame of reference throughout the middle and early modern ages up to the restoration and beyond – the prefectures were created in direct succession to the shogunate era feudal divisions and their borders kept shifting through mergers and territorial transfers until they reached their present state in the 1890s. Cities, since their introduction in 1889, have always belonged directly to prefectures and are independent from districts. Before 1878, districts had subdivided the whole country with only few exceptions. In 1878, the districts were reactivated as administrative units, but the major cities were separated from the districts.
All prefectures were – except for some remote islands – contiguously subdivided into districts/counties and urban districts/cites, the precursors to the 1889 shi. Geographically, the rural districts were based on the ancient districts, but in many places they were merged, split up or renamed, in some areas, prefectural borders went through ancient districts and the districts were reorganized to match. District administrations were set up in 1878, but district assemblies were only created in 1890 with the introduction of the district code as part of the Prussian-influenced local government reforms of 1888-90. From the 1890s, district governments were run by a collective executive council, headed by the appointed district chief and consisting of 3 additional members elected by the district assembly and one appointed by the prefectural governor – similar to cities and prefectures. In 1921, Hara Takashi, the first non-oligarchic prime minister, managed to get his long-sought abolition of the districts passed – unlike the municipal and prefectural assemblies, an early platform for the Freedom and People's Rights Movement before the Imperial Diet was established and became bases of party power, the district governments were considered to be a stronghold of anti-liberal Yamagata Aritomo's followers and the centralist-bureaucratic Home Ministry tradition.
The district assemblies and governments were abolished a few years later. As of today and villages belong directly to prefectures. However, for geographical and statistical purposes, districts continue to be used and are updated for municipal mergers or status changes: i
The Shōgun was the military dictator of Japan during the period from 1185 to 1868. The shogunate was their government. In most of this period, the shōguns were the de facto rulers of the country, although nominally they were appointed by the Emperor as a ceremonial formality; the shōguns held absolute power over territories through military means. An unusual situation occurred in the Kamakura period upon the death of the first shōgun, whereby the Hōjō clan's hereditary titles of shikken and tokusō dominated the shogunate as dictatorial positions, collectively known as the Regent Rule; the shōguns during this 134-year period met the same fate as the Emperor and were reduced to figurehead status until a coup d'état in 1333, when the shōgun was restored to power in the name of the Emperor. Shōgun is the short form of Sei-i Taishōgun, the individual governing the country at various times in the history of Japan, ending when Tokugawa Yoshinobu relinquished the office to Emperor Meiji in 1867; the tent symbolized the field commander but denoted that such an office was meant to be temporary.
The shōgun's officials were collectively the bakufu, were those who carried out the actual duties of administration, while the imperial court retained only nominal authority. In this context, the office of the shōgun had a status equivalent to that of a viceroy or governor-general, but in reality, shōguns dictated orders to everyone including the reigning Emperor. In contemporary terms, the role of the shōgun was equivalent to that of a generalissimo; the title of Sei-i Taishōgun was given to military commanders during the early Heian period for the duration of military campaigns against the Emishi, who resisted the governance of the Kyoto-based imperial court. Ōtomo no Otomaro was the first Sei-i Taishōgun. The most famous of these shōguns was Sakanoue no Tamuramaro. In the Heian period, one more shōgun was appointed. Minamoto no Yoshinaka was named sei-i taishōgun during the Genpei War, only to be killed shortly thereafter by Minamoto no Yoshitsune. In the early 11th century, daimyō protected by samurai came to dominate internal Japanese politics.
Two of the most powerful families – the Taira and Minamoto – fought for control over the declining imperial court. The Taira family seized control from 1160 to 1185, but was defeated by the Minamoto in the Battle of Dan-no-ura. Minamoto no Yoritomo seized power from the central government and aristocracy and established a feudal system based in Kamakura in which the private military, the samurai, gained some political powers while the Emperor and the aristocracy remained the de jure rulers. In 1192, Yoritomo was awarded the title of Sei-i Taishōgun by the Emperor and the political system he developed with a succession of shōguns as the head became known as a shogunate. Yoritomo's wife's family, the Hōjō, seized power from the Kamakura shōguns; when Yoritomo's sons and heirs were assassinated, the shōgun himself became a hereditary figurehead. Real power rested with the Hōjō regents; the Kamakura shogunate lasted for 150 years, from 1192 to 1333. In 1274 and 1281, the Mongol Empire launched invasions against Japan.
An attempt by Emperor Go-Daigo to restore imperial rule in the Kenmu Restoration in 1331 was unsuccessful, but weakened the shogunate and led to its eventual downfall. The end of the Kamakura shogunate came when Kamakura fell in 1333, the Hōjō Regency was destroyed. Two imperial families – the senior Northern Court and the junior Southern Court – had a claim to the throne; the problem was solved with the intercession of the Kamakura shogunate, who had the two lines alternate. This lasted until 1331, when Emperor Go-Daigo tried to overthrow the shogunate to stop the alternation; as a result, Daigo was exiled. Around 1334 -- 1336, Ashikaga Takauji helped; the fight against the shogunate left the Emperor with too many people claiming a limited supply of land. Takauji turned against the Emperor when the discontent about the distribution of land grew great enough. In 1336 Daigo was banished again, in favor of a new Emperor. During the Kenmu Restoration, after the fall of the Kamakura shogunate in 1333, another short-lived shōgun arose.
Prince Moriyoshi, son of Go-Daigo, was awarded the title of Sei-i Taishōgun. However, Prince Moriyoshi was put under house arrest and, in 1335, killed by Ashikaga Tadayoshi. In 1338, Ashikaga Takauji, like Minamoto no Yoritomo, a descendant of the Minamoto princes, was awarded the title of sei-i taishōgun and established the Ashikaga shogunate, which lasted until 1573; the Ashikaga had their headquarters in the Muromachi district of Kyoto, the time during which they ruled is known as the Muromachi period. While the title of Shōgun went into abeyance due to technical reasons, Oda Nobunaga and his successor, Toyotomi Hideyoshi, who obtained the position of Imperial Regent, gained far greater power than any of their predecessors had. Hideyoshi is considered by many historians to be among Japan's greatest rulers. Tokugawa Ieyasu seized power and established a government at Edo in 1600, he received the title sei-i taishōgun in 1603, after he forged a family tree to show he was of Minamoto descent.
The Tokugawa shogunate lasted until 1867, when Tokugawa Yoshinobu resigned as shōgun and abdicated his authority to Emperor Meiji. Ieyasu set a precedent in 1605 when he retired as shōgun in favour of his son Tokugawa Hidetada, though he maintained power from b
The Tokugawa Shogunate known as the Tokugawa Bakufu and the Edo Bakufu, was the last feudal Japanese military government, which existed between 1603 and 1867. The head of government was the shōgun, each was a member of the Tokugawa clan; the Tokugawa shogunate ruled from Edo Castle and the years of the shogunate became known as the Edo period. This time is called the Tokugawa period or pre-modern. Following the Sengoku period, the central government had been re-established by Oda Nobunaga during the Azuchi–Momoyama period. After the Battle of Sekigahara in 1600, central authority fell to Tokugawa Ieyasu. Society in the Tokugawa period, unlike in previous shogunates, was based on the strict class hierarchy established by Toyotomi Hideyoshi; the daimyō were at the top, followed by the warrior-caste of samurai, with the farmers and traders ranking below. In some parts of the country smaller regions, daimyō and samurai were more or less identical, since daimyō might be trained as samurai, samurai might act as local rulers.
Otherwise, the inflexible nature of this social stratification system unleashed disruptive forces over time. Taxes on the peasantry were set at fixed amounts that did not account for inflation or other changes in monetary value; as a result, the tax revenues collected by the samurai landowners were worth less and less over time. This led to numerous confrontations between noble but impoverished samurai and well-to-do peasants, ranging from simple local disturbances to much larger rebellions. None, proved compelling enough to challenge the established order until the arrival of foreign powers. A 2017 study found that peasant rebellions and collective desertion lowered tax rates and inhibited state growth in the Tokugawa shogunate. In the mid-19th century, an alliance of several of the more powerful daimyō, along with the titular Emperor, succeeded in overthrowing the shogunate after the Boshin War, culminating in the Meiji Restoration; the Tokugawa shogunate came to an official end in 1868 with the resignation of the 15th Tokugawa shōgun Tokugawa Yoshinobu, leading to the "restoration" of imperial rule.
Notwithstanding its eventual overthrow in favor of the more modernized, less feudal form of governance of the Meiji Restoration, the Tokugawa shogunate oversaw the longest period of peace and stability in Japan's history, lasting well over 260 years. The bakuhan taisei was the feudal political system in the Edo period of Japan. Baku is an abbreviation of bakufu, meaning "military government"—that is, the shogunate; the han were the domains headed by daimyō. Vassals provided military service and homage to their lords; the bakuhan taisei split feudal power between the shogunate in Edo and provincial domains throughout Japan. Provinces had a degree of sovereignty and were allowed an independent administration of the han in exchange for loyalty to the shōgun, responsible for foreign relations and national security; the shōgun and lords were all daimyōs: feudal lords with their own bureaucracies and territories. The shōgun administered the most powerful han, the hereditary fief of the House of Tokugawa.
Each level of government administered its own system of taxation. The emperor, nominally a religious leader, held no real power; the shogunate had the power to discard and transform domains. The sankin-kōtai system of alternative residence required each daimyō to reside in alternate years between the han and the court in Edo. During their absences from Edo, it was required that they leave family as hostages until their return; the huge expenditure sankin-kōtai imposed on each han helped centralize aristocratic alliances and ensured loyalty to the shōgun as each representative doubled as a potential hostage. Tokugawa's descendants further ensured loyalty by maintaining a dogmatic insistence on loyalty to the shōgun. Fudai daimyō were hereditary vassals of Ieyasu, as well as of his descendants. Tozama became vassals of Ieyasu after the Battle of Sekigahara. Shinpan were collaterals of Tokugawa Hidetada. Early in the Edo period, the shogunate viewed the tozama as the least to be loyal. In the end, it was the great tozama of Satsuma, Chōshū and Tosa, to a lesser extent Hizen, that brought down the shogunate.
These four states are called Satchotohi for short. The number of han fluctuated throughout the Edo period, they were ranked by size, measured as the number of koku of rice that the domain produced each year. One koku was the amount of rice necessary to feed one adult male for one year; the minimum number for a daimyō was ten thousand koku. Regardless of the political title of the Emperor, the shōguns of the Tokugawa family controlled Japan; the administration of Japan was a task given by the Imperial Court in Kyoto to the Tokugawa family, which returned to the court in the Meiji Restoration. While the Emperor had the prerogative of appointing the shōgun, he had no say in state affairs; the shogunate appointed a liaison, the Kyoto Shoshidai, to deal with the Emperor and nobility. Towards the end of the shogunate, after centuries of the Emperor having little say in state affairs and being secluded in his Kyoto palace, in the wake of the reigning shōgun, Tokugawa Iemochi, marrying the sister of Emperor Kōmei, in 1862, the Imperial Court in Kyoto
Azaleas are flowering shrubs in the genus Rhododendron the former sections Tsutsuji and Pentanthera. Azaleas bloom in the spring, their flowers lasting several weeks. Shade tolerant, they prefer living under trees, they are part of the family Ericaceae. Plant enthusiasts have selectively bred azaleas for hundreds of years; this human selection has produced over 10,000 different cultivars. Azalea seeds can be collected and germinated. Azaleas are slow-growing and do best in well-drained acidic soil. Fertilizer needs are low; some species need regular pruning. Azaleas are native to several continents including Asia and North America, they are planted abundantly as ornamentals in the southeastern US, southern Asia, parts of southwest Europe. According to azalea historian Fred Galle, in the United States, Azalea indica was first introduced to the outdoor landscape in the 1830s at the rice plantation Magnolia-on-the-Ashley in Charleston, South Carolina. From Philadelphia, where they were grown only in greenhouses, John Grimke Drayton imported the plants for use in his estate garden.
With encouragement from Charles Sprague Sargent from Harvard's Arnold Arboretum, Magnolia Gardens was opened to the public in 1871, following the American Civil War. Magnolia is one of the oldest public gardens in America. Since the late 19th century, in late March and early April, thousands visit to see the azaleas bloom in their full glory. Azalea leafy gall can be destructive to azalea leaves during the early spring. Hand picking infected leaves is the recommended method of control, they can be subject to phytophthora root rot in moist, hot conditions. In Chinese culture, the azalea is known as "thinking of home bush", is immortalized in the poetry of Du Fu; the azalea is one of the symbols of the city of São Paulo, Brazil. Azaleas and rhododendrons were once so infamous for their toxicity that to receive a bouquet of their flowers in a black vase was a well-known death threat. In addition to being renowned for its beauty, the azalea is highly toxic—it contains andromedotoxins in both its leaves and nectar, including honey from the nectar.
Bees are deliberately fed on Azalea/Rhododendron nectar in some parts of Turkey, producing a mind-altering medicinal, lethal honey known as "mad honey". According to the ancient Roman historian Pliny the Elder in his Natural History, an army invading Pontus in Turkey was poisoned with such honey, resulting in their defeat. Motoyama, Kōchi has a flower festival in which the blooming of Tsutsuji is celebrated and Tatebayashi, Gunma is famous for its Azalea Hill Park, Tsutsuji-ga-oka. Nezu Shrine in Bunkyo, holds a Tsutsuji Matsuri from early April until early May. Higashi Village has hosted an azalea festival each year since 1976; the village's 50,000 azalea plants draw an estimated 60,000 to 80,000 visitors each year. Sobaeksan, one of the 12 well-known Sobaek Mountains, lying on the border between Chungbuk Province and Gyeongbuk has a royal azalea festival held on May every year. Sobaeksan has an azalea colony dotted around Biro mountaintop and Yonwha early in May; when royal azaleas have turned pink in the end of May, it looks.
The Ma On Shan Azalea Festival is held in Ma On Shan, where six native species are found in the area. The festival has been held since 2004. Many cities in the United States have festivals in the spring celebrating the blooms of the azalea, including Summerville, South Carolina; the Azalea Trail is a designated path, planted with azaleas in private gardens, through Mobile, Alabama. The Azalea Trail Run is an annual road running event held there in late March. Mobile, Alabama is home to the Azalea Trail Maids, fifty women chosen to serve as ambassadors of the city while wearing antebellum dresses, who participated in a three-day festival, but now operate throughout the year; the Azalea Society of America designated Houston, Texas, an "azalea city". The River Oaks Garden Club has conducted the Houston Azalea Trail every spring since 1935. List of Award of Garden Merit rhododendrons List of plants poisonous to equines "Azalea". Encyclopædia Britannica. 1911. Azalea Society of America American Rhododendron Society: What is an Azalea?
Azalea Collection of the U. S. National Arboretum Azalea Collection of Botany garten Pruhonice CZ