japanese landscape garden ARCHITECTURE

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  • Abhishek chhonkar NIT JAIPUR

  • IntroductionEssential AspectsDesign PrinciplesBasic rules in the design of Japanese gardensElements of Japanese GardenTypes of Japanese GardensCase studyBibliography

  • The art of gardening is believed to be an important part of Japanese culture for many centuries. The garden design in Japan is strongly connected to the philosophy and religion of the country. Shinto, Buddhism and Taoism were used in the creation of different garden styles in order to bring a spiritual sense to the gardens and make them places where people could spend their time in a peaceful way and meditate.

  • The line between garden and its surrounding landscape is not distinct. Gardens incorporate natural and artificial elements and thus, fuse the elements of nature and architecture. In the Japanese garden, the viewer should consider nature as a picture frame into which the garden, or the man- made work of art, is inserted.

  • Nature is the ideal that you must strive for. You can idealize it, even symbolize it, but you must never create something that nature itself cannot.

    Balance, or sumi. The proportions and spaces are an essential Design principle

    The emptiness of portions of the garden. This space, or ma, defines the elements around it, and is also defined by the elements surrounding it. It is the true spirit of yin and yang. Without nothing, you cannot have something. It is a central tenet of Japanese gardening.

  • Hill and pond and flat styles can be shin (formal), gyo (intermediate) or so (informal). Formal styles were most often found at temples or palaces, the intermediate styles were appropriate for most residences, and the informal style was relegated to peasant huts and mountain retreats. The tea garden is always in the informal style.

  • The concept of wabi and sabi: Wabi can denote something one-of-a-kind, or the spirit of something. Sabi defines time or the ideal image of something. While a cement lantern may be one of a kind, it lacks that ideal image. A rock can be old and covered with lichens, but if it is just a round boulder it has no wabi. We must strive to find that balanceBoth the concepts of ma and wabi/sabi deal with time and space. Where the garden is our space, time is ably presented by the changing seasons. Unlike the western gardener the Japanese garden devotee visits and appreciates the garden in all the seasons.

  • In spring one revels in the bright green of new buds and the blossoms of the azaleas. In summer you appreciate the contrasts of the lush foliage painted against the cool shadows and the splash of koi in the pond. Fall wrests the brilliant colors from dying leaves as they slip into the deathly hush of winter, the garden buried under a shroud of snow. Winters is as much a garden season in Japan as spring. The Japanese refer to snow piled on the branches of trees as sekku, or snow blossoms, and there is a lantern known as yukimi that is named the snow viewing lantern.

  • The fence is a tool to enhance the concept of miegakure, or hide and reveal. Many of the fence styles offer only the merest of visual screens, and will be supplemented with a screen planting, offering just the ghostly hints of the garden behind. Sometimes a designer will cut a small window in a solid wall to present the passerby with a tantalizing glimpse of what lies beyond. Even if we enter the house to view the garden we may well encounter sode-gaki, or sleeve fences. This is a fence that attaches to an architectural structure, be it a house or another fence, to screen a specific view. To view the garden as a whole one must enter it and become one with the garden. This is the final step in the true appreciation of the garden, to lose oneself in it until time and self have no meaning.


  • Rock an important feature

  • Natural: that should make the garden look as if it grew by itselfAsymmetry: that creates the impression of it being naturalOdd numbers: It supports the effect of the asymmetrySimplicity: that follows the idea of 'less is more'Triangle: that is the most common shape for compositions made of stones, plants, etc.Contrast: that creates tension between elementsLines: that can create both tranquility and tensionCurves: that softens the effectOpenness: that indicates interaction between all elements

  • a stone lantern representing four natural elements: earth, water, fire and windstatues of male and female lions, placed at the entrance of the garden in order to protect the garden from intruders, representing the two opposite forces: yin and yang (fire and water, male and female).water basin known as a deer chaser, which keep deer away by making a special sound when filled upthe koi fish swimming in ponds, which has a decorative meaningtypical Japanese bridge, called a moonbridge, whose purpose is to reflect artistic feelings.

  • Ponds, waterfalls, wells, bridges (real or symbolic)Stepping stones, Garden pathsStone water basins, stone lanternsGarden plants and treesFences and wallsStones

  • It represents the sea, lake, pond or river in nature. Non geometrical in appearance; in order to preserve the natural shapes, man- made ponds are asymmetrical. The bank of the pond is usually bordered by stones A fountain is sometimes found at the bottom of a hill or hillside or secluded forest. Wells are sometimes found in a Japanese garden.

  • Usually used in tea gardens.flat stepping stones served to preserve the grass as well as orient the viewer to a specific visual experience. step- stones are found near the veranda or entrance of the house or tea room. The visitor of the house or room is expected to place his shoes on the step- stone before entering.

  • Two kinds of stone water basins- kazari- chozubachi, which is kept near the verandah tsukubai for tea gardenStone lanterns are placed besides prominent water basins whose luminance underscored the unfinished beauty of the tea aesthetic.

  • Garden of the 10th to 12th centuries contained cherry, plum trees, pines and willows.

    Influence of the Zen sect and watercolor painting from Southern China transformed the colorful Japanese garden in the Middle Ages.

    Flowers, flowering plants and shrubs were regarded as signs of frivolity and were replaced by evergreen trees that symbolized eternity.

  • Japanese garden is predominately green with its use of evergreen trees.

    When flowering trees found in Japanese garden are camelias, specifically the tsubaki and sazanka.

  • Scientific Name: Abies FirmaHabitat: EvergreenTexture: CoarseHeight: 40 to 70 Leaf: 1.5" dark green needles are notched at base; sharp prickly point Flower/Fruit: 3.5 to 5" brown cones

  • Scientific Name: Acer capillipes Habit: Deciduous Growth Rate: Moderate Site Requirements: Sun to partial shade; prefers moist, well drained soil Texture: Medium Form: Round head; low branches Height: 30 to 35 Flower/Fruit: Greenish white flowers on 2.5 to 4" pendulous raceme; attractive samara in fall

  • Scientific Name: Acer palmatumGrowth Rate: Slow to moderate Site Requirements: Light dappled shade; evenly moist, well drained soil; protect from drying winds Texture: Medium to fine Form: Low; dense rounded top; spreading branches; assumes a layered look Height: 15 to 25' Flower/Fruit: Small red to purple flowers; attractive if viewed closely but insignificant from a distance

  • Scientific Name: Alnus japonica Site Requirements: Sun to partial shade; range of soil types including wet and infertile soil Form: Slender, narrow upright habit Height: 12 to 25 Leaf: Oval, narrow leaves Flower/Fruit: Yellow brown to red brown catkins (male flowers); female flowers on short purplish brown strobili which persist until winter

  • Scientific Name: Aralia elata Growth Rate: RapidSite Requirements: Sun to partial shade; range of soil types but prefers moist, well drained soil Texture: Medium Form: Irregular to spreading; often multi-stemmed Height: 20 to 40 Leaf: 3 to 5.5" compound leaves; yellow to reddish purple fall color Flower/Fruit: 12 to 18" white flowers in August; purple fruit

  • Scientific Name Betula grossaGrowth Rate: Moderate Site Requirements: Sun; moist well drained soil Texture: Medium Form: Pyramidal Height: 20 to 25' Leaf: 2 to 4" alternate, simple leaves; yellow fall color Flower/Fruit: Nonshowy flowers

  • Scientific Name: Carpinus japonicaGrowth Rate: Slow Site Requirements: Sun to light shade; moist well drained soil but tolerates a range of soil types Texture: Medium Form: Rounded; densely branched; wide spreading branches Height: 20 to 30' Leaf: 2 to 4.5" leaves; yellow to nonshowy fall color Flower/Fruit: 2 to 2.5" fruit

  • Scientific Name Cornus officinalis Growth Rate: Moderate Site Requirements: Sun to partial shade; range of soil types Texture: Medium Form: Picturesque; multi-stemmed ; low branches; oval to round habit Height: 15 to 25' Leaf: 4" opposite, simple leaves; purple fall color Flower/Fruit: Cluster of short stalked yellow flowers with drooping bracts on naked stems in early spring; .5" shiny red fruit in clusters in fall

  • Scientific Name: Cryptomeria japonicaHabit: Evergeen Growth Rate: Moderate Site Requirements: Sun to light, high shade; rich deep, well drained soil but will thrive in a range of soil types Texture: Fine to medium Form: Pyramidal; semiformalHeight: 50 to 60' Leaf: Awl shaped, bright to blue-green foliage; smooth to the touch; bronze tones in winter, especially if exposed to wind.Flower/Fruit: Small terminal cones

  • There are three types of fences: the short fence which extends from the house into the gardenan inner fence and an outer fence. Short fences or