A Preview of the Key Elements in a Japanese Zen Garden
Japanese Zen gardens are becoming increasingly popular nowadays. This can be due to its graceful mixture of rocks, plants and water all carefully ordered to give a feeling of calm and tranquility. If you are considering building your personal Japanese Zen garden at home, here would be the essential elements to remember.
Ancient Japanese mythology puts a lot of emphasis on stones and mountains as the earth’s foundation; therefore, the Japanese consider this as one of the key elements when designing their Zen gardens. They believe that when the rocks are arranged well, the other parts of the garden will follow as the stones form the frame of the garden. In the event that you are designing your Zen garden, some ideas would be laying out grey river stone which is uniform in size to form a stream bed or including raked gravel around isles.
Water is looked upon as a vital part of every Japanese Zen garden as it reveals the continuous and constant flow of time. Elements of water in the Zen garden are clear in their thin strings flowing through rocks, their pond installations and the gravel, rocks, and sand where water appears to have run dry to symbolize the past time. It may be a great idea to introduce bamboo fountains or falling water in your garden design to enhance the Japanese garden flavor.
Because the Japanese culture places a lot of significance on life being a path, the gardens are designed to take the guests through a path that is carefully designed. The key reason for the path in the Zen garden is the union of the elements of the garden, apart from fulfilling cultural demands. They also put a lot of emphasis in designing architecture that improves the path. These are made from natural materials including rock, wood, and metal. Traditional Japanese architecture includes pavilion rock lanterns and wells. You can even have a tea house in the middle of the garden. You can also add your personal touch by integrating bamboo garden fences or stone water jars to provide the impression of grace and lightness.
Each Japanese garden is designed so that the stone layout is followed by the plants. Therefore, instead of letting the plants to dictate the appearance of your design, always remember your stone layout in choosing the plants that will create the background and soften the lines. You can pick various kinds of garden plants to complement the stone layout from conifers to evergreens to local hardwoods, to blooming trees and shrubs and perennial forest flowers.
Aside from the minimalism of the Japanese gardens, what many folks do not know is that the design tries to show the unique relationship between man and nature.