“Meadow, Rock, & Japanese Gardens” Heatherwood Spring
Heatherwood is comprised of several separate garden areas. Each one has a distinctive feeling and character. Even though the gardens are distinct, common elements link them as they flow from one to the other. The scene above illustrates three layers of gardens; the foreground meadow, the mid ground rock garden, and the distant background Japanese garden. Conifers and rocks are repeated to transition from the Japanese garden to the rock garden. Perennials are repeated to transition from the rock garden to the meadow. Together they harmonize with each other.
I was away on a photography workshop in the Palouse for just a week. I came back to a wonderful surprise. Our meadow had transformed from a collection of buds to a burst of spring color. Yellows, greens, reds, and purples burst throughout Heatherwood. It was a wonderful welcome home!
“Orangeola & Kotoji Abstract” Heatherwood Japanese Garden
Today is a very special day full of sweet and happy memories of the past. Many times we spent the day walking through gardens around the areas where we lived. On our adventures, we were always keeping our eyes and mind open to observe the beauty surrounding us, both natural and man-made. We collected ideas on what we could bring home to our own garden.
Other years we would explore various garden centers and purchase new additions for our garden. We couldn’t wait to plant the new acquisitions. Here at Heatherwood, I have been able to draw on these previous experiences to develop a Japanese-influenced garden in part of our property. Strolling through Heatherwood takes me back to prior wonderful memories and stimulates me to enjoy the present and look forward to bright future days.
Heatherwood continues to give up something new and interesting every time we stroll around the garden. Little elements of nature abound at every turn. These gifts are for the taking. I just need to recognize them and add a little creativity.
“Kotoji, Waterfall, & Japanese Maple” Heatherwood Japanese Garden
I keep coming back to this view in our Heatherwood Japanese garden. The Japanese maples continuously change in color, shape, and texture through the revolving seasons. In time they will flow over the stream’s edge becoming one with it. The Kotoji Japanese lantern acts like a guardian over the stream stabilizing the scene with its graceful legs .
The Guardian A Japanese maple gently bends, Shielding the flowing stream, As the guarding Kotoji overlooks.
Spring brings out the energy of emerging new life. The sensitivity of infrared to the bright greens and yellows highlight spring’s energy. Springtime in Heatherwood is the time for me to explore with my infrared photography.
“Impressionistic Variegated Redtwig Dogwood” Heatherwood Spring
As I stroll around Heatherwood, I am constantly on the alert for those little vignettes that catch my eye. For this shaded scene, I first noticed contrasting blue and green colors. Looking closer, the contrasting textures of grasses, the variegated redtwig dogwood, and the background blue spruce add to the interest. Reviewing the image on my computer, I thought that it would be interesting to view it as a painting. I added an impressionistic flair to achieve this image.
I remember roaming around the eastern woodlands in Virginia and North Carolina and enjoying the early blooming white dogwoods and redbuds. I can visualize visiting Jefferson’s Monticello with its surrounding eastern woodlands decorated with dogwoods and redbuds. It brings back many wonderful memories.
Here at Heatherwood in Eastern Washington, I am trying to recreate a little of this dream memory. Last year, we planted a redbud grove and a couple of white dogwoods. However the dogwoods were late bloomers and did not coincide with the redbuds. This year we planted two early blooming white dogwoods and have been successful in matching their blooming times. As trees get a little larger, we will add some rhododendrons to complete the scene.
This glorious crabapple highlights the corner of our house and the Heatherwood Japanese garden. The tree was planted here before I moved back to Selah in 2016. It is very close to the house and hangs over the entry path to the side of the Japanese garden. Its original shape was heavily leaning and contorted. Over the years, I have selectively pruning it to recover its shape and provide clearance to walk under it on the path. Each year I remove a branch or two to “guide” it in the direction I want it to grow while maintaining its overall health. The tree is beautiful and provides a special anchor to our springtime Japanese garden.
Today we return to a deep pink flowering crabapple. The various colors of the different trees provide a beautiful contrast in Heatherwood’s crabapple grove. They have varied between white, whitish pink, light pink, and deep pink. The trees’ barks, leaves, blooms, and fruits are all different. They all contribute to variety of little surprises that change from season to season.
This post shows the last crabapple that we have planted in our small crabapple grove. The trees are small now. We patiently wait enjoying each surprise they give us as we contemplate what they will be like in the years to come.