“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.
“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.
“Japanese Maple in Snow” Heatherwood Japanese Garden
This Japanese Maple is persistent. It just will not drop its leaves. Most of our Japanese Maples have a similar habit. They add to contrasting colors in the winter landscape as well as provide interesting “nesting spots” for winter snow. If the snow gets too heavy, we do have to gently dust it off the fragile branches to protect them from breaking. Later in the early spring we also need to gently run our hands through the branches to remove the leaves on some of the trees to prepare for the fresh new growth.
Hana Matoi Late Fall Growth Heatherwood Japanese Garden
A few red and green leaves of late autumn growth contrast against the dried brown leaves of the spent leaves. Ice plants in their red and yellow winter color on the hillside frame the new leaves.
Below, the fragile disectum leaves of the Hana Matoi shade the spreading blue purplish green thyme below.
This concludes my Hana Matoi mini-project. Or does it? These six images in the last 3 posts were all taken on an overcast day. Early morning light and late afternoon light provide many additional perspectives. Different seasons display different colors. Snow, ice, rain, and dew create magical views. And there are always an abundance of opportunities for abstracts. An infinite number of images are yet to be discovered.
Hana Matoi Looking Down Heatherwood Japanese Garden
This post continues my Hana Matoi mini project. Looking for a different perspective, I walked up and leaned into the tree. I stood on my tip toes, held my camera above my head and took this image looking down through the top leaves to highlight the structure of the trunk and branches. It looks like a good spot for a bird to nest.
The image below is from a perspective of walking on a semi-hidden path adjacent to the main Japanese garden path. The Hokkeji pulls a visitor’s eyes to the Hana Matoi and the garden hillside.
Hokkeji and Hana Matoi Heatherwood Japanese Garden
Hana Matoi Japanese Maple Heatherwood Japanese Garden
I love my morning walks through the garden with my camera. Many times I stop and take a photograph of something I have taken several times before. A couple of days ago I decided to give myself a little challenge to take purposeful photographs of some of our Japanese maples from a different perspective than I have before.
I walked around the little Hana Matoi from different directions and distances. I took close-up and distance images. I climbed above and got down on my hands and knees to just check things out. I used the tree as my primary subject and as a background. I used my feet as my zoom lens. After about an hour, I had around fifty images of different perspectives. I decided to make a small mini project of six images to attempt to characterize our little Hana Matoi Japanese maple.
The above image portrays the Hana Matoi near the entrance of Heatherwood’s Japanese Garden looking east. The maple welcomes visitors to the garden and introduces them to what is to come.
In the image below, the Hana Matoi bids the visitors goodbye as they round a bend and start to exit the garden.
Here comes the sun! We are blessed with such brilliant color, even in late, late, autumn, when the morning sun strikes the remaining fall foliage. It doesn’t seem like today is the first day of winter. Soon the last leaves will be dropping off our Japanese maples. We will still be intrigued with their silhouettes and textured and colored bark throughout the winter.
With the Covid-19 virus still on the loose, we are planning on staying put at home for the winter. Our changing garden will help provide a stimulus to get us outside for little excursions. I look forward to recording how the garden transitions from fall into winter, then into spring. We have planted various trees, shrubs, and other perennials that will provide winter interest as well as late winter blossoming. We look forward to seeing the thousands of bulbs we planted this fall emerge in early spring.
“Japanese Maple & Waterfall” Heatherwood Japanese Garden
My vision of our Heatherwood Japanese Garden stream and waterfall is to have the stream encased by green trees, spreading evergreen shrubs, and ground covers flowing over the stream edges. I want to create a feeling that the stream and surrounding plants and rocks are a single complementary element. In this image, the Japanese Maple flows into the stream. What is missing is something to cover the ground beneath the maple that will spread over the rocks.
Over the past year I have been gazing over the stream to define the “vignette” that I am looking for. I feel that I am ready to start moving forward. We are currently in the planning process to develop the specific plant selection for next year’s Heatherwood project. The stream bed and surrounding area will be our top priority.
Shin Deshojo Japanese Maple Heatherwood Japanese Garden
How fast things change. The initial color of the first emerging leaves of this Shin Deshojo is a light pinkish red. Within a week they had turned to this brilliant red. Now, a month later, the leaves are a greenish-red color. Soon they will be a medium green. And then in the fall, they will be a brilliant red again. What a wonderful show this little tree gives us over the year.
The different and changing colors of our 26 Japanese Maples consistently catch my eye. Every time I walk through the garden, I look for something different. It is easy to find.
This view of the Kotoji Japanese lantern and the spring-colored Japanese maples is just one of the several focal points that we can see from our view point shown in my previous posting. The afternoon sun makes the reds of the Japanese maples glow as well as highlights the Kotoji. Spring at Heatherwood is brilliant. A glass of red wine goes well with the red Japanese maples. Here’s a toast to Spring!