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by Bob Kerstetter
Tsutsuji (躑躅) — azaleas in English — bloom in Kairakuen garden park in Mito City, Ibaraki Prefecture, Japan.
Nariakai Tokugawa from the final shogunate family created the garden as a park for feudal lords and commoners.
He designed Kairakuen for education, training and relaxation.
This photo captures the garden on a sunny spring day looking down from the third floor of Kobuntei, the primary residence in the park.
The roof in the foreground consists of bamboo shakes fastened with bamboo pins onto wood slats.
Mito City sits approximately 120 kilometers northeast of Tokyo.