Why the beautiful hibiscus compliments Okinawa.
The hibiscus flower represents Okinawa, and there is no other that can look so beautiful against the pure blue sea and sky of southern Japan.
It is said that there are over 5,000 varieties of this flower as a result of selective breeding.
They all have different petal shapes and colors, and aside from red, white and yellow, rare colors such as gray and purple have recently come about.
However, this flower is not only beautiful but is also a useful plant which compliments the lives and customs of the Okinawan people.
Hibiscus extract is used in basic cosmetics and supplements, and is found to be effective in relieving fatigue or smoothing out rough skin. Hibiscus jam and herb tea are also popular souvenirs.
Its sturdy branches also mean that the hibiscus can be used as a windbreaker, and so you will often see it being used as hedges surrounding Okinawan houses, or as trees lining the streets.
There is also an old fashioned custom of planting hibiscus in the hopes of bringing happiness to the deceased, which is why it can often be seen around graves.
Throughout Okinawa, the hibiscus plant can be enjoyed all year round, giving these colorful flowers the image of being in bloom for a long period of time.
In reality, this flower’s life is only 1-day long,in the language of flowers,
its name means ‘delicate beauty’.
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