Despite my garden being full to overflowing after the spring rain I have decided to create a new area for a Japanese Garden. When starting a new project I was advised to have a name that may colour the end result. I opted for the grand title of ‘Japan Land’ This will be a long term project and I won’t rush it as I have on other projects in the past.
Action Plan for my Japanese Garden
- Read up on the various forms and the nature of Japanese gardens.
- Decide which area is going to be sacrificed to provide space for the Japanese garden.
- Draw a rough plan on a piece of paper and list the features to be incorporated.
- Walk the patch and see if any plants need to be left in situ. I have a couple of Azaleas that I want to keep.
- List the gardening problems I have caused in the past that I hope to avoid on this project.
Past Problems to Avoid
- I generally leave too little space for paths and access.
- Forgetting to label or record the location of a particular plant has meant I do not give any individual treatment until it is too late.
- Many Japanese favourites are long lived such as Acer, Wisteria and Peonies so I must leave enough space for them to grow and develop.
- Moss and greenery – I am collecting mossy rocks and treating others with moss food (old Yohgurt & soil)
- Asymmetrical shapes and layout will be a contrast to the straight lines of my formal borders.
- Preferring plants to structures in this garden I need to change and incorporate some formal structures short of a tea-house. Think about motion, water and space.
- The foreground, middle-ground and background need too be viewed several times from all vantage points before I move on to a detailed drawn plant.
Well it should be back to the Books for a while, a good pastime for Autumn when the workload reduces.
Phase Two Action Plan
- Bring the various plans together in a more detailed manner.
- Test the conditions of the site, ph, rain shadow, shade and nutrient levels.
- Clear the site except for the odd plant that is being saved. Relocate or give away surplus plants.
- Order the key trees and plants or visit specialist nurseries to acquire.
- Install the main structural features and any plants that need to be established before winter.
- Tell the family what I want for Christmas.