Japanese Garden Landscaping - More Than Just Flowers

When it comes to gardens, the Japanese are one of the finest designers. When one visits Japanese garden, he might see a big lotus pond with a delicate bridge that spans across it, a wide variety of plants, beautiful flowering trees and skillfully displayed rock formations. The view immediately gives the person a sense of calm. Truly, one cannot deny the fact that Japanese garden landscaping is awe aspiring.

Japanese garden landscaping is categorized into three types. The first and the most common is the Tsukiyama type, which means "constructed mountain" in English. A Tsukiyama inspired garden is basically a garden with contours and hills. It may also include a pond or stream with various plants and shrubs. A typical Japanese house or a temple may be erected on the grounds.

Another main feature of a Tsukiyama garden is that the entire place can be seen from strategically placed vantage points.

The different category of Japanese garden landscaping is called the Karensansui or dry landscape gardens.Tuinarchitecten Gardens of this type are associated with people who practice Zen Buddhism.

What makes this garden apart from other gardens is that it has only minimal or no vegetation at all. Instead, the main elements of a Karensansui garden are carefully arranged rocks and sand. The rocks usually symbolize the Japanese islands. The sand, which is raked in circular patterns, symbolizes the sea. The rock gardens of the Ryoanji and the Daitokuji temples are perfect examples of Karensansui.

Unlike a Tsukimaya garden, a Karensansui garden is to be viewed from a single, seated perspective.

Lastly, the third category of Japanese garden landscaping is the Chaniwa. This type of garden dates back to the 14th century. This is not a garden in the real sense of the word. Instead, this type of Japanese garden landscaping is characterized by a beautiful, carefully planned path made out of stepping stones that lead to a tea room. This tea room is called Chaniwa, hence, the name of the garden. The Chaniwa also has stone water basins where the guests can wash themselves so they could partake of a tea ceremony.

Apparently, the designer of the Chaniwa type of garden wants to invoke to his guests a feeling of peace, solitude and enlightenment with this design. Therefore, the Chaniwa garden is a perfect place for meditation. Usually, Chaniwa gardens are not open to the public.

It is worthwhile to see these types of Japanese gardens. By doing so, one will truly feel at peace with himself while having a glimpse with the unique Japanese culture.


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