Autumn Scenery


The trees on the temple grounds are showing a variety of beautiful fall colors now! Be sure to visit within the next two weeks to get some great photos of the foliage!


Summer in the North Garden

Cleaning up the North GardenThe summer months mean more growth in the gardens and therefore more cleaning and weed pulling. Grass and weeds take root amongst the rocks and the monks have to head out and clean things up. Of course after walking on the rocks to take care of the weed pulling, next is re-raking the rocks into shape. The pond also got a little bit of sprucing up by way of a net used to clean up some debris around the edges of the water.

The North Garden

North Garden

The North Garden stands opposite of the more austere South Garden in the palace area of the temple. The North Garden was originally completed in the 17th century, but was destroyed in a large fire with the rest of Goten during the Meiji Period. The garden was reconstructed during the restoration of Goten in the early 1900s. The garden is in the “pond-viewing” style and features a large pond in the shape of the Chinese character “心” meaning “heart” or “spirit.” There is a small waterfall to the left of the garden, and on the right there is a manmade hill on which a tea house sits. This tea house is named “Hitō-tei” and is over 200 years old. The building was damaged during the Great Hanshin Earthquake in 1995, and while there were some repairs after the earthquake, the tea house has never needed to be rebuilt. Hitō-tei was a favorite tea house of Emperor Meiji’s grandfather, and because it was patroned by the emperor Hitō-tei forgoes the usual “crawling” entrance found in tea houses in favor of a “nobleman’s” entrance tall enough to walk through without bowing.

The roof of the Middle Gate is visible beyond the trees surrounding Hitō-tei and the five storied pagoda stands in the background.

View of North Garden from Reimeiden