Monday, December 2, 2013

Portland’s Japanese Garden, after the color

As a member of Portland’s Chinese Garden, Lan Su, I enjoy reciprocal membership at our Japanese Garden for the entire month of November. I intended to visit earlier in the month, to enjoy the fall color, but never quite got my act together.

I had decided to take a pass for the year but then realized what I enjoy most about the Japanese Garden isn’t the plants, but the structure. Stones, pavers, fences, and maybe now with bare branches there would be more tree structure to enjoy! So we visited last week…

There is a viewpoint in the garden that affords a look at Mt. Hood. Can you see it in the distance?

Here’s a close up.

These people were being instructed on the proper way to enjoy the sand and stone garden. They were encouraged to sit or lie on the ground, nobody did.

As you can see I tend to get rather distracted by all the patterns and hardscape.

The pond wasn't frozen when we visited but it had the look of frozen water, with the needles arranged as they were.

After our walk around the Japanese Garden we decided to explore a bit more of the park, we happened upon the International Rose Test Garden as they were getting ready for the annual “wind pruning” with a few blooms still showing off.

Whoever this crazy guy was he must not have ever seen a Protea in flower!

All material © 2009-2013 by Loree Bohl for danger garden. Unauthorized reproduction prohibited and just plain rude.

25 comments:

  1. Such a peaceful, serene place. I remember being impressed by all the hardscape choices there too.

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    1. I swear sometimes I have to remind myself to look up and the plants!

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  2. I'm impressed with how beautiful the garden is even after the foliage. Crazy Bill probably didn't see a lot of the flowers that we take for granted in our gardens.

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  3. I agree on the structure (amazing detail), yet here it's often nice hardscape without plantsmanship. I think both are needed and why this garden works, others not so much. (trying to picture it especially without your ecoregion's coniferous backdrop) Nice tour...next time I'm in Portlandia!

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    1. You are coming to the Fling this summer, right?

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    2. Definitely thinking about it...

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  4. I'm glad you went after all of that distracting, gaudy fall color was gone. :)

    A palette of greens, browns, and grays is still quite nice, and you see more of the textures. Now you need to go in the dead of winter too -- how about when it's in the teens later this week? ;)

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    1. I know right? Seriously though after visiting Kubota Garden in Seattle last month I wasn't really feeling the need to go look at more fall foliage in an asian garden. This was just what I needed! As for returning when it's in the teens...you're crazy. Although I wouldn't put it past Scott (who is a member) to return for some photos if we do get some snow (which is perhaps back in the cards again...)

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  5. Subdued, almost somber, but still impressive.

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    1. Somber, that's the perfect work Kris.

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  6. Almost better than the peak seasons, thanks for this peek at the garden in its stripped-down winter state.

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    1. I realized a couple of weeks ago I've never seen this garden in high summer. I wonder what it looks like then?

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  7. It looks tranquil place, feeling relaxed now just looking at your photos. Will you take us here if ever we make it there (or is it part of itinerary)?

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    1. Yes of course! I'll take you guys anywhere and everywhere that you want to see. And yes actually it is on the Fling itinerary too...

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  8. naked trees are srtiking and sad....but still worth the visit

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  9. You are so lucky to have such a garden near you, beautiful even after the color, this I like

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  10. I love it all! But I really like the the wisteria climbing the pergola. I built one similar to the one that in Huntington Garden. Thanks for the fantastic photos. If your in the Spokane area for the holidays, you should stop by the community college greenhouse.

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  11. I have always enjoyed this garden, but have never visited in winter--that's the cool feature of Japanese gardens; the structure is relevant all year. I think the flingers will enjoy this !

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  12. I didn't know about the reciprocal November admission - that's great for next year. We visited the garden earlier this year for the Noguchi exhibit. It was the perfect venue to display his sculpture. Although the structure and simplicity is beautiful, each time we visit I realize my favorite element of the garden is - moss!

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  13. I appreciate all the hardscape photos. Inspirational!

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  14. Great post. I love the Portland Japanese Garden precisely because of the design, layout and structure. There's something so considered, yet soothing about it.

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  15. Wonderful! This is especially nice on the heels of Scott's post. I think we need to make sure one of you is always visiting. :)

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  16. I hereby present you with the Dragon Loyalty Award for all your good commenting! No strings attached and you don’t have to follow the “rules of acceptance.”

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  17. What would Shakespeare have thought of a protea flower, I wonder? Or an agave bloom stalk, for that matter. Your view of Mt. Hood is spectacular. I can't imagine seeing such a thing in the distance over my city. And I'm really looking forward to visiting the Japanese Garden during the Fling.

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