Pieris japonica in Liverpool front gardens
It has an undeniably Japanese look.
It embodies the principles of contrast and asymmetry.
Its twisting woody stems are like laid paths in a Japanese garden, that open onto unexpected vistas.
Its leaf-growth, lying at different heights, suggests rock-terraces.
The scarlet of new growth contrasts definitively with the green of its older leaves, and the cream-white of its clustering flowers is restful, like broderie anglaise against summer lawns.
It is far more beautiful and strange than its surroundings.
Again and again it is a small but pleasant shock, like hearing German spoken on an English street and being called abruptly into that different self.