I am heading to Japan for three weeks beginning Oct 4/10. We land in Tokyo and will stay there for two days then moving on to Kanazawa (2 days); then to Takayama (2 days); to Kyoto (5 days); onto Gobo/Mio in Wakayama (2 days); Hiroshima (2 days); Kumamoto (2 days); Kagoshima/Ibusuki (3 days) and then back to Tokyo on the 25th. flying home on the 26th.
I know there are wonderful gardens in Kanazawa and Kumamoto area that are listed in the top 10 gardens in Japan as well as the standard ones in Kyoto area but looking at my itinerary, are there any other must see gardens that my trip will take me close enough to that I should visit them?
Without know where you are going, it is not very easy to answer your question. A place not likely on your agenda that i enjoyed was the Hosokawa residence. It is the restored residence in shoin tsukuri style. If you are into traditional Japanese architecture and garden, you will like this. Then of course there is the sake factory...
I think I'll reply to this old thread, however since it has already been wakened from the dead I am not necroposting!
I left the field of medicine in 1987 and was looking for something to do with myself. I had always enjoyed gardening and come from a family rich in gardens and horitucltural experience. I began volunteering at Mercer Arboretum and Botanic Garden in Humble, Texas, outside of Houston. There I met another volunteer, Fukumi Smith. She and I assisted a group fo staff gardeners on a shaded pond garden project. Brenda Klimt, was the horticulturist involved and askd if Fukumi-san had any design inspiration form her Japanese heritage. In the end we had created a very sensible pond garden of Japanese design. We were not able to receive authorization for a yukimi-doro so we set the stone base projecting over the ponds edge as if to imply the lantern's presence. It worked!
When this project was over, Fukumi-san recommended that I apply for a position with the City of Houston Parks and Rec Department specifically to assist Ken Nakajima with the design, construction and installation of the Japanese Friendship Garden in Hermann Park. I did just that and remained on staff after the garden opened. In 1993 I was promoted to Director of the Japanese Garden. During the years that followed I had many opportunities to visit Japan, learn from Ken Nakajima, Shunmyo Masuno and many others. I joined the Board of Directors of the International Assiciation of Japanese Gardens following the first symposium held in 1996. My husband at the time had received many awards for his work in Japanese Classical Dance and became known as Takamaharyu Gobo. This led to living in Japan for the better part of 6 years.
I was reunited with several members of the Portland Japanese Garden staff and BoD in 2006. After many months of negotiation I agreed to leave my post with the US Botanic Garden in DC and take the position of Director of Grounds Maintenance in 2007. I am vacating this position today. Should anyone be interested in applying for the position please send your cover letter and resume to Sada Uchiyama, Garden Curator, Portland Japanese Garden at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Gini, Best of luck in your new position, I have a great deal of respect for you and the way you have appealed on behave of the Portland Japanese Gardens for a replacement for yourself. In my mind your ethics and personal standards are above reproach. I am delighted to know you better through your posts and hope we continue to have your valued opinions on our forum.
Again good luck in your new position, it sounds like it will be both challenging and rewarding for you.
Good luck Ginger. As i have already expressed - sadness for your leaving the garden, happiness for your new exciting position. Don' forget us.
Had a wonderful trip to Japan. My first japanese garden we visited was Kenrokuen Garden in Kanazawa. It is considered one of the top 3 gardens in Japan and we were not disappointed. We watched the gardeners form a line in the creek flowing through the gardens and using straw brooms, swept the rocks of accumulated growth. We also watched as 10 gardeners swarmed a large pine tree and it was akin to watching Edward Scissorhands at work. Branches large and small flew from the tree and it took three gardeners on the ground to rake up all the clippings. Looking at all the trees that needed pruning, they would have to begin all over once the last tree had been pruned! We also noted that every residence had either a vegetable garden or used the little space they had for a formal garden with shaped pines and other plants.
Most temples we visited had magnificent gardens or trees on their properties and we enjoyed not only the buildings but the vegetation surrounding them.
Nara outside of Kyoto also had wonderful parks with huge pruned trees but the best garden was in Kumamoto in Kyushu. We visited the Suizen ji garden which replicates the Road to Edo including Mt Fuji. Wonderful garden and very serene.
Sounds like a great trip!
Glad you had a good trip. I agree with you about Suizen-ji, but i might be a little partial! ; ) I hope to go back and visit other gardens outside of Kumamoto and Kyoto.
Kelvin, I envy your expierence! Sounds like you had a wonderful trip, any photos you care to share with those of us who are unable to visit Japan?
I took quite a few pics while in Japan. What is the best way to post these pics?
I've loaded some pics into Photobucket. Try this link. this is my first time so not sure if I did it right.
I tried that link and it doesn't work. Try this one.
Brilliant photo's, I bet you had a great time.
I'm with George, thank you for sharing your photos, made my morning!
I wish I was able to take in more gardens. Everywhere you look there are shaped trees and shrubs. I still think watching those 10-12 workers in Kanazawa all pruning the tree at the same time was amazing. It looked like it was raining branches while they worked!!
I've added a few more pics for your viewing pleasure.