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Books on Japanese Gardens

The interest in Japanese gardens seems to increase with each decade. This helps to explain why there are a number of new books on the subject. Here are some titles to help you with your landscaping needs.

“Create Your Own Japanese Garden-a Practical Guide” by Motomi Oguchi with Joseph Cali was published by Kodansha America. This comprehensive guide features layouts, and step-by-step instructions on how to design and install each feature in your own garden. The author uses examples of gardens he has created in his 30+ year career. He devotes a chapter to each type of Japanese garden. Examples include courtyard gardens, tea gardens, and dry landscape gardens. In addition, he also offers landscape solutions for small businesses and commercial sites.

There are practical, illustrated, how-to details for various projects, techniques, and procedures used in Japanese gardens, such as creating and repairing a bamboo fence, building a Japanese deck, and installing winter protection for evergreens. He even explains how to blend western and Japanese features for a harmonious look. This book contains information that will also help you in other areas of the landscape, such as details on how to transplant and arrange trees, how to work with stone, and how to maintain your garden.

Whether you’re planning a small courtyard or a more elaborate one for your front yard, this title will prove to be invaluable. The author is considered one of the world’s premier Japanese garden designers and has worked all over the world with more than 400 gardens to his credit.

“The Modern Japanese Garden” is an exquisite book featuring breath taking photos by Michael Freeman and text by Michiko Rico Nose with an introduction by Shunmyo Masuno. This was published by Tuttle, a division of Periplus Editions. This offers an invaluable approach to Japanese gardens as this art form has experienced considerable change in recent years as cutting edge designers have experimented by adding non-traditional features. Many of the contemporary gardens presented in this volume have never appeared in print before in the West.

This ground breaking title offers exquisite design solutions for difficult sites in the landscape. Instead of the usual homely functional retaining wall, this book has inspiring examples for sloping sites. There are ideas for both large and small spaces. These appealing designs are adaptable enough to satisfy the sensibilities of the traditionalists while at the same time adapting it to the modern culture. For each featured garden, there are photos and story, and usually a sketch of the layout as well.

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