Japanese Garden Decoration Tips

| September 2, 2013 | 2 Comments
Japanese Garden Decoration Tips

Today, my words will take you on a mind blowing trip to the orient. We are going to be discussing the fine design of Japanese gardens.

I had recently gone on an excursion to Japan, and while there I took some time to visit a few of the gardens in Tokyo. I must say that it was an eyeful to see the beautiful landscaping, the way they take care of the rock gardens, and even the well kept structures, possibly tea houses.

I’ve always had a certain image of the life and culture of Japan. Some of the image came from Hollywood so it was a bit tainted. When it came to the Japanese gardens though, I had a decent idea of what to expect — or so I thought.


Below is a list I compiled while on the plane home. They are designed nuances I discovered while on my adventure. I hope they serve you well.


Key Features

After doing a bit of research I found that some of what I am about to share can get a bit pricey. Just keep in mind that the items are not 100% essential. After all, your project is your art piece, and can be interpreted in any way you desire.

lanternGranite Lanterns

The lanterns can be large or small. I found that all the gardens I went to had granite lanterns. As I mentioned above about items being pricey, these bad boys can range from a couple hundred dollars to the thousands. That being said, they do make a garden have that Japanese inspired feel almost immediately.


Garden bridges can be a DIY project or you can purchase one already made. They come in granite or wood construction and cost about the same as the lanterns. I’ve seen them range from about a hundred and fifty to in the thousands. It is not necessary to install one unless you already have or are planning to create a stream running through your garden. A bridge certainly adds a decorative focal point to your backyard space.


The types of trees I found almost always were Juniper, Japanese Maple, and Sakura (Cherry Tree). When the Sakura are in full bloom, they are a mild pink color that contrasts with almost any background. It is truly a beautiful sight to see and a must if you ever visit Japan.


The Japanese Maple tree is unique. It changes colors throughout the season and has leaves with 5-7 points. It is considered a desirable garden feature, but not 100% necessary for my palate.


The Juniper can come in many sizes. The most well known is the smaller Bonsai tree. The art of Bonsai is very fascinating and if you can incorporate these carefully fashioned, small trees into your garden, I would give you a high-five!

Koi Pond

Now, a Koi pond can also be very expensive and not just at the beginning. It requires considerable maintenance. It isn’t 100% necessary to install one, but, boy, does it make a yard pop. The Koi give the garden a vibrant life that can only be achieved with living creatures. The fish can become quite large as they will grow to whatever size the pond can accommodate. They are fascinating to watch!

Every garden had something unique about it.


koiKoi Pond

Now, this one can also get very expensive and will take some maintenance. It isn’t 100% necessary, but boy does it make a yard pop. The Koi give the garden a vibrant life that can only be had with living creatures. Every garden had something unique about it. I especially liked seeing the different size Koi because they can get huge!


Keep Lines Clean And Garden Green

The best tip I could give is to make sure your garden is well kept. Anywhere the grass meets concrete, you will need to make sure it is edged properly. Maintain the yard once it is in place and you will have a relatively low maintenance backyard for years to come, and a beautiful one at that!

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Category: The Essence of Design

About the Author ()

Anthony is an Australian native with a knack for world traveling. His passion for art and design has taken him to many countries where he enjoys seeing and learning new things. While aimlessly browsing the internet, Anthony will occasionally find something worth while to share on his blog. He loves learning from other people so while reading the blog make sure to leave a comment or question so we can keep a conversation for the world to benefit from! You can also find him on Google+

Comments (2)

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  1. Daichi Yamamoto says:

    Great article Anthony. :)

    The granite lanterns are very common in traditional Japanese gardens, but can also be found around households as well. My family travels to and from the USA regularly and I have seen different trends in both areas. Maybe you can talk about the traditional rock gardens?

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