Seattle Japanese Garden opens on March 1

Parkways » Seattle Japanese Garden celebrates Opening Day First Viewing

The Seattle Japanese Garden’s 2014 season opens on Saturday, March 1 with a celebration from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. To ensure a wonderful season, Reverend Koichi Barrish of the Tsubaki Grand Shrine will honor the Japanese Garden with the traditional Shinto blessing at noon.

This 3 ½ acre formal garden evokes another time and place, a unique and artistic representation of nature influenced by Shinto, Buddhist, and Tao philosophies. Designed and built under the supervision of world-renowned Japanese garden designer Juko Iida in 1960, the garden is a quiet place, allowing reflection and meditation through the careful placement of water, garden plants, stones, waterfalls, trees and bridges.

Admission fees for First Viewing are: $10 for adults 18-64, $5 for youths 6–17, senior adults 65+, college students with ID, and people with disabilities, and free for kids younger than 6.

For free, the community is invited to enjoy the opening of a beautiful new photography exhibit “A Celebration of Spring”  from 11 a.m. to 3 p.m. in the Tateuchi Community Room.  The juried show also on March 1 celebrates nine photographers and their fantastic views of the Garden from a spring workshop in 2013.

The Japanese Garden offers monthly tea presentations and demonstration at the Tea House and other great community events during the March -November season when it is open to the public.

via Parkways » Seattle Japanese Garden celebrates Opening Day First Viewing.

A Japanese garden in Corvallis, Oregon



The world-famous Portland Japanese Garden is but the start of a North American Asian garden exploration in the Pacific Northwest. The area, so like Japan in climate and horticulture, is teeming with many hidden gems like the “Garden of Gentle Breeze,” a private haven located in the university town of Corvallis, Oregon.





From the website: “Garden of Gentle Breeze is a green oasis  crisscrossed by footpaths, three gentle  ponds with the soothing sounds of small waterfalls. The large boulders and stones  help us to feel grounded in the earth while above us and around us stand the towering firs, flowering shrubs and plants, all carefully placed to create a sanctuary of tranquility.The garden is a place of harmony that integrates the four elements–earth, air, water, and fire–and achieves a balance between Yin and Yang. As a wedding venue, it is a perfect place to begin one’s life journey with the one you love and a place that you can return to again and again for inspiration, rekindling fond memories and renewing your vows as the years go by.  Family and invited guests will always remember what a special and beautiful day they spent being part of your wedding.  They too can return to visit the gardens whenever they feel the need to relax and rejuvenate.”

via Garden of Gentle Breeze | Corvallis Japanese Garden in Oregon.

Portland Japanese garden writing contest

Koto-ji lantern at the Strolling Pond Garden. Photo: Oregon Live

Gardens stir up memories. It could be the scent of a rose, the image of a sculptural bonsai, the touch of a textured leaf.

The Portland Japanese Garden invites everyone who has a personal story inspired by a walk among its 5.5 acres to enter its writing contest. The deadline is Feb. 12.

People often tell Steve Bloom, the garden’s CEO, how it’s inspiring to spend time among the five traditional styles of Japanese gardens.

“A Japanese garden has an ability to transport a person, help them connect and to touch people’s lives,” he says. “It is a unique experience with the potential to be transformational.”

Visitor Colleen Posley shared a memory of a trip to the garden with her grandparents after her grandmother was diagnosed with transient ischemia.

Posley posted on the Portland Japanese Garden’s Facebook page: “She’d started to lose her memory by then and Grampa and I sat on a bench and watched her walk around enjoying the peace and the flowers and the general loveliness of the place. It was a good day.”

Send your entry in A Memory I Carry Writing Contest to by Feb. 12. The winner will receive a $55 gift card and two runners up will each be awarded a $25 gift card.

via Oregon weather: Stay inside and enter a garden writing contest |

GARDEN VISIT: Nitobe, Vancouver BC

The Nitobe Memorial Garden — one of the top five most authentic Japanese gardens outside of Japan — is best explored in a counter-clockwise fashion that follows the way of the moon, rather than the sun.  It is said that one can walk through it as if making a symbolic journey through life — as life is experienced in the span of a day, or a week, or a year or a lifetime: beginning, growing, changing and ending. Photos: GRM