Budding industry: Production has hit full swing for a group of residents making salted cherry blossom petals in Unnan, Shimane prefecture, known for its cherry blossoms. The salted petals open up when added to tea and other beverages, allowing drinkers to take in the sweet and sour aroma. Using about 175 pounds of petals from a cherry tree variety called Kanzan, the group marinates them with salt and ume plum vinegar for about 20 days. The petals are then dried in the shade for 1-1/2 days. Above, the cherry blossom petals are arranged one by one by hand.
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