Garden Showcase - Fujiyama Japanese Garden by Sam Whiskey
Situated in the hills of County Antrim, Northern Ireland, this garden has been a labour of love since 1995 when the first sod for the pond was dug. Below is an aerial photo of the area - you can clearly see the extent of Sam's efforts!
Encompassing about 3/4 of an acre it consists of a Dry Garden, Tea Garden, Stroll Garden, and Water and Rock Garden. Below is a Japanese log bridge, since replaced by a Turf bridge. The lantern on the island IKEKOMI-GATA (buried lantern) known also as the Oribe lantern. It does not have any pedestal, being buried directly into the earth.
A planting of Japanese Maples, bamboos, grasses, ferns, Ginko Biloba, Hinoki Cypress, a giant Gunnera, some tree ferns from Tasmania (dickonsonia), Rhododendrons, Azaleas, and many native species add up to an interesting and indeed spectacular garden.
Introduced into Japanese Gardens for decorative reasons, the Deer Scarer (below) was an import from the farmlands where it was used to scare off wild deer and boar. Water from a feeding spout flows into a hollow bamboo tube which tips forward and then drops back onto a sounding stone. The resultant clack frightened the deer, and in the garden gives a feeling of solitude.
A number of granite Japanese ornaments complete the picture for the visitor. Below is a tall and ornate lantern with a carved roof and broad pedestal. It is placed at the meeting of the paths from the Tea Garden with that leading from the rhododendrons towards the Dry Garden.
Sam has also included some excellent videos - all in Windows media player format. For more videos and links to downloading the latest media player, click here
A walk in the Garden
Sam has also charted his progress through the creation of a Japanese garden, entitled 'How I built a Japanese garden'. It includes everything starter gardeners would need to know from introduction of fish (Beware of the great diving beetle!) to sculpting your own Mt. Fuji. To view chapters from the book, please click here. Here is an extract from the book.
Chapter 6 - The building of a mountain.
'I came on a photograph of a volcano. Not just any volcano, but Mounta Fujiyama. Considered by the Japanese to be sacred, Mount Fuji was reproduced in miniature in stone on the photograph in front of me. I didn't like it in stone, it appears a little stark somehow, but what if i built it out of rubble and soil, and covered it in moss? Wouldn't that be impressive and cheap? I decided to give it a go. As it happened it turned out to be alot easier then i though.'
Please click this link to view Sam's website
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