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     Marijke & Piet.

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“Less is more”? Overall measurements to reduce maintenance

Cryptomeria Japonica"yohaku no bi": "the beauty of empty space", also ma or aki. [2 (p118) ]. For the Western, non-Zen viewer, the art of yohaku is perhaps best described in terms of Mies van der Rohe's "less is more". However I am not sure if this is what was meant with the almost destruction of the [...]

What tools to use to trim Buxus topiary shrubs?

I think the complete question should read like: What tools to use to trim Buxus topiary shrubs … in a Japanese- and more specifically Zen-garden? Most of the karikomi and hako-zukuri topiary and other shrubs are the evergreen Buxus sempervirens (Box or Boxwood). Throughout the years I have used, or perhaps it is better to […]

Midoritsumi or ‘green picking’ the pine-trees

pinus-densiflora-before-midoritsumi-IMG_4269This year we had an early and fabulous spring with summer-like temperatures and little, actually far too less, rainfall. After the autumn momiage, removing dead needles from pine, this is the next major activity related to pine. Where in the previous year and in May 2009 I applied midoritsumi or ‘green picking’ of the pine [...]

Trimming ‘the five Islands of immortality’ topiary box

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To the left of the front entrance, beside the drive we used box to represent  Hõrai-jima, ‘symbol of the islands of the Blest’ (Taoist myth) sometimes represented as mountainous islands, houraiseki. Here ‘the five Islands of immortality’. These islands where thought to float in a remote sea, carried on the backs of giant turtles. […]

Trimming the Juniperus media topiary shrubs

juniperus-media-blue-pruning-backIMG_3895

These two Juniper, Juniperus media “blue” are regarded topiary shrubs, rather then trees, because they are kept so low and form the backdrop for the main garden tsukubai facility. This photo shows the backside, as seen from the waterfront. The plant in front (right) is still untouched whereas the one in the back has […]

Hako-zukuri style Prunus lusitanica “tree” tuning

Prunus-lusitanica-tuning-wipIMG_3872

Keeping a full grown large-leaved strong grower in shape and within the desired size limits is a challenge in its own right. This photo was taken halfway through the pollarding-plus topping. In Hako-zukuri style Prunus lusitanica “tree” you can see how it looked a couple of weeks back. Note that the photo’s have been […]

Herb garden box-hedge trimming

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Herb garden box-hedge trimming needs to be done twice per year. Depending on the growth-cycle the first time in any year can be limited to partial clipping (post Partial buxus clipping for way through) to ensure the pathway walk-trough and easy access to the different plant-compartments. Although a herb garden may not be the first […]

Partial buxus clipping for way through

This path is our passage in the left-side-garden that connects the front garden compartment to the Water front (back side) compartment. At this time it is not yet necessary to clip the Box (buxus) topiary as such. However to maintain a way through the herb-garden, we do a partial clipping of these buxes. That is […]