The Kyoto Gyoen National Garden includes three Imperial Palaces, which were occupied at the time when Kyoto was the capital of Japan. Hundreds of nobles were living on the grounds of the current garden, but when the Emperor moved to Tokyo in 1869, the nobles followed and the garden went into a state of decline. The Emperor then ordered a restoration of the grounds and today Gyoen is a public garden. The garden is located in the center of Kyoto and covers 160 acres. It is surrounded by a stone wall with several gates. There are around 50,000 trees in this garden. The main alleys are wide and covered with macadamized gravel.
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THE GENERAL AREA
Entrance to a section of the garden with two Japanese lanterns on each side.
Work of art? This structure was on top of a small building and was made of what appeared to be fall garden ‘waste’.
Vast areas of the garden are covered with moss.
Moss is prevalent in shady areas.
There’s a heavily used bicycle path in the middle of a main walkway near the Imperial Palace.
A stone wall near the Imperial Palace.
THE TEA HOUSE
Tea Houses are generally by a pond. Horizontal trellis for – probably – a wisteria.
Turtles in the middle of that pond were basking in the mid-March sun.
Single stone slab bridge over a stream near the Tea House. Not open to the public.
Another view of the stone slab bridge.
THE TREES – including the ones with supports
Two different tree species – a conifer and a deciduous – grow close together.
Their tangled tops.
A majestic tree in the middle of younger ones, but with something special.
That ‘something special’ is a palm-like epiphyte growing in the middle of the branches junction with the main trunk.
This (about) 30 degree pine trunk is supported near a walkway. Note the slats under the ties to protect the bark.
Detail of a support tie. This one appears to be in need of slacking a little bit.
The base of those trees is carefully wrapped for protection against an insect.
Which is this one.
This grassy monticule, if one looks closely, covers the stump of a broken cherry tree. The tree can be seen extending to the right in the background. It has since re-rooted and grown several new tree-branches.
A large tree with evergreen foliage.
A tiny pine shooting up from a pine trunk slice.
This venerable plum tree (ume) is fenced in due to its historical importance.
Another historically important tree, a muku tree (aphananthe aspera).
An old stump surrounded by new growth.
It is very rare in Japanese gardens to see a tree that was actually cut down. There must have been a REALLY good reason. Another tree is already growing from the stump.
So far this pine only has one support, yet has several long horizontal branches. A matter of time.
Detail of a double support.
Detail of a branch support.
Some horizontal branches had epiphytes growing on the underside.
Detail of the epiphytes.
This tree has a nice star-shaped root system.
Intensive care? This tree seems to have a big problem.
The base of this tree support needs attention.
Vine creeping on a tree. When trees – and vines – are bare the vine action is easier to see.
Pine maintenance crew at work.
This tree must have a special significance due to its supports and fencing – and sign.
Bell-shaped yellow flowers on a shrub.
Flowers close up.
THE KAN-IN-NO-MIYA SITE