Los Angeles and the Japanese Garden

There is a great read on the history of Japanese-Americans and their influence(s) on the gardening culture in and around Los Angeles.

[photo from the story]

Included is the history of how it started, the interruption of WWII, and the demise of Japanese-Americans in the landscaping field today. This link will take you to the print page.

For all its subtlety, the classic Japanese garden can be downright
cocky. It aims to do no less than “capture the whole universe of nature
in a small scale,” says Uesugi. So you don’t need a spare park or
waterfall in your backyard to capture the magic.

Info is also included on the exhibition titled: “Landscaping America: Beyond the Japanese Garden” at the Japanese American National Museum, 369 E. First St., Los Angeles

Categorized as stuff

By Rick Anderson

The Whispering Crane Institute was originally formed to act as the umbrella organization for the Philosophy of Design Symposium, and other seminars and workshops given by Rick Anderson and Richard L. Dube’. In the year 2000 WCI became a sole proprietorship owned by Rick Anderson. Today the WCI provides design and consultation services for Landscape Contractors, acts as a Green Industry think tank, and provides training for others in the form of workshops, seminars, and individual consulting. The WCI also provides written material, opinions, case-studies and how-to articles for industry trade magazines.


  1. Nice picture, thanks for the links.
    My own garden project is taking on a japanese, or at least far east, theme of its own with a couple of acers and some azaleas in there, a bed of seagrasses and some container limited bamboos, an above ground pond and lots of bare pressure treated, but unvarnished wood – I love the colour of pine that has weathered naturally.
    The pond is full to the brim now after a stormy week and its time to add some koi to the orfe that are in there at the moment.
    The previous owners also left a large area at the top of the garden covered simply in different coloured shales (slate chippings), boring but effective and lazy gardening 🙂

    Sounds like you’re moving along nicely . . . this pond isn’t going to explode like the other one is it?

  2. 🙂 This pond has been technically calculated with due deference to loading kinetics and stress tolorances.

    In other words I used screws instead of nails and fastened lots of angle brackets everywhere – then crossed my fingers.

    Its still raining here after ten days and the pond is brim full, so much so that the fish can peer over the edge now, I may need to make a start on an ark anytime soon.

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