The garden of Irina Andrianova

 

The Japanese gardens in Russia

The area of the garden is 6 ares

The year of the beginning of its creation is 2005

When a question arose whether to create a garden on our plot of land, I started to surf the Internet and books, searching for some information like many other beginners. As soon as I saw Japanese gardens, I fell in love with them immediately. It was, to all appearances, true love as that feeling was getting stronger and stronger with time. At first I was just looking at the pictures without paying attention to the study of these gardens. Perhaps thatТs why I made a lot of mistakes and some of them, unfortunately, are quite difficult to correct.

The garden of Irina Andrianova

My house is almost in the middle of the garden. Someone thinks itТs a disadvantage but not me. Four out of the five zones in my garden have formed by themselves. I started with the creation of the largest part of my garden. Having seen a lot of pictures I placed some gravel around a gazebo and paved a meandering path right from it. To my surprise, the garden still didnТt look Japanese. After that I decided to make a bamboo fence tied up with rope around the gazebo, but it didnТt help either as the garden looked quite ridiculous. Then I realized that I just didnТt have enough knowledge about this subject.

Unfortunately, we had very few books about Japanese gardens in Russia, but I was lucky to meet people who had valuable information about them. They were not only ready to share it with me, but they also advised necessary literature, websites and magazine articles. Of course, many of them were in English, but the main thing was that they were.

Little by little my garden was changing. Now there is a tea house instead of that gazebo.

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The garden of Irina Andrianova

However, the tea house hasnТt simply taken the place of the latter. It plays a completely different part. The tea house in my garden is the place, where I can have a rest, making myself comfortable on the cushions, reading a book and enjoying juicy cherries. Depending on the weather, the position of the sun, wind or just my mood, I open one window or another. In warm weather the doors are usually slid apart so I can see tsukubai which is opposite the entrance to the thickets of spirea. I can also hear the sound of running water. In the tea house we can talk with our guests or have a cup of tea.

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The garden of Irina Andrianova

In my garden there are many elements of a tea garden: a tea house, soto-koshikake, stepping stones. However, the garden is not divided into external or internal parts, as required by the canon of a classic tea garden. Besides, there is a small pond. All this is not typical for tea gardens of the 16th century, when the structure of the garden was organized in a special way and a tea house looked like a small hut with a tiny entrance (nidziriguti). This kind of tea gardens could be found later at the end of Edo period.

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The garden of Irina Andrianova

Although I specially formed the garden in such a way, its purpose cannot be reduced to a ritual act. In my garden I wanted to have a rest, to relax and to have an opportunity to get away from the bustle of the city. Our friends pursue the same goals while visiting us. Many of them like to take a steam bath. Despite the fact that our bath house is Russian, it is decorated in the Japanese style inside and outside.

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The pond in front of the bath is similar to a Japanese onsen. In Japan ryokans, small hotels in the traditional Japanese style, are often located next to hot springs. The history of the appearance of these hotels is very old and it dates back to the 8th century, when Buddhist monks organized free coaching inns for travelers in order to make their way easier. Later in Heian era those hotels for pilgrims appeared in temple complexes and in the estates of feudal lords. A lot of shelters were built in Edo period. At that time feudal lords were not free to move around the country and the only exceptions were made for pilgrimage to holy places and medical trips to hot springs. In modern times it has gradually led to the development of a special kind of tourism. Ryokans began to appear near the hot springs, replacing rooming houses. Traditional Japanese inns have not lost their popularity to this day. We can often find there not only a pool of healing hot water, but a garden and a tea house. It has been seen that my garden bears a close resemblance to this type of gardens. Perhaps this is a result of my own working experience at the Japanese resorts on Hokkaido.

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The garden of Irina Andrianova

At the end of the story, I would like to emphasize one thing. I was creating my garden with my husband. He is also in love with Japanese gardens. The projects of all constructions in our garden as well as plenty of ideas belong to him. I am very lucky that my loved one shares my interests.

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The garden of Irina Andrianova

The Japanese gardens in Russia

Photo & text: Irina Andrianova

 

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