Japanese Garden Reference Library

Design & Theory

Why are Japanese gardens so desirable? How do they affect our societies? These and other questions will be explored in this section.

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Japanese Gardening Tools

Starting with the right tools can save trouble later. This section offers descriptions and reviews plus suggestions for a couple of basic tools along with how to keep them clean and sharp

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Bamboo Fences

Enclosures and boundaries in Japanese gardens are a basic design consideration.  Here are examples of bamboo fences and methods of construction.

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Stone Lanterns & Basins

While too many “adornments” are not ideal, well placed lanterns, markers, and basins are highly valued in the Japanese garden. Learn about stone lanterns and other stone elements.

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japanese garden path najga reference guide


Japanese garden pathways are very much part of the experience and design, guiding visitors to important points or features, even directing views and cadence of the journey.

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Japanese Garden Plants

Information on pruning, candling and guiding growth of Japanese Black Pine, notes on pruning Japanese Maple, and a list of plants to use in warm, arid climates.

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The Tea Garden

The “Way of Tea” has a major influence on Japanese garden design. This article offers an account of a formal Japanese tea ceremony in a traditional Tea Garden.

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Gardening Terms

A dynamic list of over 150 common terms used in Japanese gardening that may be helpful to know.  They are listed here along with their meaning and Kanji form.  Related list: ‘tea terms‘.

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Garden Galleries

A gallery of photos & sketches relating to Japanese gardens, many posted by JGO forum members.  The section includes photos of gardens in Japan, private gardens around the world, carpentry techniques, pond building and more.

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World Japanese Garden Database

Discover Japanese gardens around the world in this comprehensive database. Use search terms and key words. Includes location, garden info, photos and more.

World Japanese Garden Database

Japanese Gardening Publications

Japanese Gardening Organization contributors submitted these publications along with reviews.  There are many more coming soon.

Japanese Garden Publications

Other Resources

Other resources on Japanese gardens, gardening and related arts.

Other Resources and Links