Last Updated on October 31, 2021 by Phil
Have you ever wondered how to create a Zen Japanese garden in your backyard?
Well, here are some of the elements that will turn any garden space into a peaceful and calming environment.
The beauty of Japanese gardens is that they don’t only exude serenity but are also beautiful. The best part is their design is unique.
So, if you want to create an amazing Japanese garden, here are some must-have elements.
How To Create a Zen Japanese Garden
The Perfect Entrance (Garden Door)
Japanese gardens are often hidden away behind small doors or gates. Like many things in Japanese culture, you do need to go out and seek them.
Privacy and serenity are common aspects for homes in Japan. And, to get into the garden, you’ll need to get through the entrance.
The Torii Gate is a very common sights in Japanese shrines. In Japanese culture, these large structures are gates through which the gods can pass to this world and back to theirs.
As such, having a Torii gate present means that deities are present in your garden.
Because their look is so unique, these gates have become symbols of Japanese culture.
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Body of Water
Japanese gardens are known for their serenity and peacefulness. Small bodies of water surrounded by rocks not only make for an amazing view but they also help up calm down.
Water, including still bodies and small waterfalls are often associated with the feeling of Zen as well.
Calming Water Feature
In addition to bodies of water, you’ll also see some small water features here and there. These are often unique to Japanese gardens as you don’t really see these kinds of design elsewhere.
Sandy Areas of Zen
In addition to grass and plants, you’ll also notice some areas that are filled with sand. In many cases the areas covered with sand are surrounded by rocks and other small plants.
These provide spaces that
Small bridges are another lovely touch that you don’t see in most gardens. Japanese garden bridges have their own unique look with many being small and covering only about 10 to 30 feet in length and curving upwards in the middle.
These bridges are used over small bodies of water as well as some sandy areas.
Koi Fish or Carp Pond
In some bodies of water, you’ll find colorful koi fish or carp. Often, their red and orange colors are wonderful to look at. And, you can sit there and watch them swim swiftly across.
In most cases, these ponds are filled with lots of fish that become very evident.
Grassy islands are another wonderful touch. They bring a little bit of contract between the sandy and concrete sections. And, they provide you with access to nature.
In some areas these grass islands are filled with moss.
Japanese Tea House
Japanese tea houses serves are private areas that are intimate. Just like the other parts of the garden, you won’t see people running around or the space have lots of gaudy accessories.
In some cases, you’ll see a small open pavilion space floor seating spaces with very little furniture as well.
Stone Paths and Stone Beds
Stones are very prominent in Japanese gardens. In many areas, you’ll see them replace grass.
These paths are often have some kind of circular stone steps albeit almost never perfect circles.
While some paths take you from one area to another, you’ll notice that not many people take these paths. Instead, there are large walkways provided for that.
Lots of Greens, Low Plants and Evergreens
One of the reasons Japanese gardens are very beautiful is everything is harmonious.
When it comes to plants, you won’t see a huge colors disparity among them either. Instead, the shrubs, bushes and trees often have colors that have subtle differences.
Many come in different shades of green. And, you’ll see some in yellow green and yellow. In some areas, around April or so cherry blossoms will also appear.
Stone Lantern or Mini Pagodas
Small, knee, waist or person tall lanterns or pagoda pillars are another mainstay of Japanese gardens. They make great accent pieces. And, you can add some lights so that they shine during the night.
These are lovely structures made from stone and carved in detail.
Japanese Garden Plants
Besides subtle differences in color, plants are often used with create structure and texture.
They are wonderful to look at because they’re able to decorate different sections.
Japanese maples are among the most popular options because of their unique look. But, there are many other plants as well.
- The Perfect Entrance (Garden Door) – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/159948224254744372/
- Torii Gate – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/198088083599154234/
- Calming Water Feature – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/38632509293659502/
- Body of Water – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/14777505017282753/
- Sandy Areas of Zen – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/5207355809715293/
- Walkable Bridge – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/49961877104297357/
- Koi Fish or Carp Pond – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/8373949297018399/
- Grassy Island – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/128493395601662107/
- Japanese Tea House – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/351912460200209/
- Add a Stone Path – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/22025485667494463/
- Lots of Greens, Low Plants and Evergreens – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/20477373294630084/
- Add a Stone Garden Lantern – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/761600986985105925/
- Japanese Garden Plants – https://www.pinterest.com/pin/92253492355780009/