Garden in Winter (Michael Roybal)

Garden in Winter (Michael Roybal)

Seike Japanese Garden is south of Seattle just about 10 minutes by car from the Kubota Gardens.  I have only been there once in the winter… I need to go back during other seasons.


A brief description from their website:

The Highline Botanical Garden Foundation and the City of SeaTac are pleased to announce that the Seike Japanese Garden has been relocated to the Highline SeaTac Botanical Garden. The grand re-opening was held on June 24, 2006.

The Seike Japanese Garden was previously located at the former site of the Des Moines Way Nursery in the City of SeaTac. In danger of being sold due the expansion of SeaTac Airport, the garden was saved by four different governments and the Highline Botanical Garden Foundation. The project is believed to be the largest relocation of a Japanese Garden ever attempted in the United States.

Shinichi Seike immigrated from Ehime, a southern Japanese island, in 1919 and ran an import/export business in Seattle. In 1929 he purchased 13 acres near Des Moines Memorial Drive and moved into a farmhouse with his wife Kameno, daughter Ruth, and sons Ben, Toll, and Hal.

Along with over 100,000 other Japanese-Americans, the family was interned during World War II. Eventually all three sons served in the military, and middle son Toll was killed in action during WWII in France while serving with the distinguished 442nd Regimental Combat Team, the most decorated military unit in U.S. History.

Many Highline area Japanese American families lost their property during the internment, but the Seikes were ironically fortunate in that a German -American family managed their property in their absence. Upon their return Shinichi Seike started a nursery in 1947, and the nursery store was opened in 1953 after sons Hal and Ben earned Horticulture degrees from Washington State University.