Anderson Japanese Gardens: A Photo Tour (pt. 1)

I’m a volunteer docent at Anderson Gardens, the top-rated Japanese garden in North America. My first shift of the season happened to fall on my birthday this year. And since a beautiful new Canon PowerShot SD1100 IS was my birthday gift from my husband (and mine to him), I took the camera out to the Gardens with me. Which means that you all get a photo tour!

I didn’t photograph the Garden of Reflection, because it’s not strictly a Japanese garden and doesn’t contain very much that you won’t have seen before. Perhaps I’ll do that next week. For today, we’ll tour the Pond Strolling Garden, the oldest of the three gardens both in actual age and in style.

This beautiful tree and boulder set are located just before the main bridge to the Pond Strolling Garden and the Tea Garden. There is a little path just beyond the largest boulder here that takes you to a couple of secluded chairs in the trees from which you can watch the creek flow.

Looking back on the Red Bridge.

After crossing the Red Bridge and entering the Main Gate (did I really neglect to photograph that?), we see one of my favorite trees anywhere. It’s growing out of the side of the hill at a precarious angle, but rather than chop it down, Hoichi-san (the gardens’ designer) chose to build a crutch for it.

It’s been there for so long (I believe the crutch was placed in 1979) that the tree has literally begun to grow around the top of the crutch. Here’s a closer look.

From here we enter the South Gate

and make out way to the pond. There are several lovely lanterns around the pond

as well as this 7-tiered pagoda.

Walk a little farther up the path, and you’re given the option of entering a viewing house. From here, I took a photo of some of the visiting geese.

You can also see the three islands: Turtle Island, Crane Island, and this one, The Island of the Ancestors.

After leaving the viewing house and continuing around the pond, you can get a beautiful view of the viewing house through the willow tree.

Near the end of the Pond Strolling Garden path is the Guest House. The Guest House features a raked garden, or a Zen garden. On May 9 it was raked to represent a rice paddy. The gravel in a raked garden always represents water of one kind or another. Here you can see the gridded rows of rice as well as small waves lapping the shore.

Leaving the Guest House, and at the end of the Pond Strolling Garden path, are these two charming little raccoon dogs. They’re called Tanuki. They always make me smile.

Finally, I want to share two close-up pictures that I took. I just love this camera!

The first is of a cinnamon-bark maple. We have three or four of these throughout the Gardens.

The second is of crabapple blossoms.

And there you go – the Pond Strolling Garden at Anderson Gardens! I hope you enjoyed it! Next time, I’ll take you around the Tea Garden.

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One Response to Anderson Japanese Gardens: A Photo Tour (pt. 1)

  1. Moose says:


    Did you know that Turtle Island also refers to North America?

    I’d love to see more of the raked garden!

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