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Welcome to Urban By Design Online! This blog is a notebook of my travels as a city planner, historic preservationist and nonprofit advocate. It's a virtual collection of the many things that I adore, featuring cities, the arts, architecture, gardens, interior design, and retail. Enjoy! - Deena
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Entries in Kiku (1)

Friday
Dec112009

Kiku at New York Botanical Garden

Kengai (Cascade) inside the Enid A. Haupt Conservatory
After a successful three-year run, Kiku: In the Japanese Autumn Garden, recently closed at the New York Botanical Garden. More than 5,000 meticulously cultivated chrysanthemums, a traditional Japanese art form, and garden plants, were on display, one of the largest ever outside of Japan.



Kengai (Cascade): This technique features small-flowered chrysanthemums that are more typical of the wild varieties. They are trained to conform to boat-shaped frameworks that cascade downward like waterfalls for lengths of up to six-and-a-half feet. The result is a burst of hundreds of tightly clustered blooms.

Rows of Ogiku-styled blossomsOgiku (Single Stem): These plants feature single-stems that can reach up to six feet tall, with one perfect bloom balanced on top. Each chrysanthemum pot is buried horizontally and the plant stem is bent, precisely arranged in diagonal lines that decrease in height from the back to the front of the bed. The plants are then arranged in color patterns resembling traditional reins called tazuna-ue (horse bridle).

 
 

Autumn Stone and Kiku Garden:  In Japan, gardens composed of stones set in raked sand are called karesansui. Abstract and sculptural, they symbolize the larger natural landscape. This Autumn Stone and Kiku Garden Is based on the karesansui style, but uses mases of chrysanthemums (kiku) and river pebbles in place of raked sand. Designed by Mark Peter Keane, the garden evokes the mountains of Japan in autumn. The red orange, and yellow kiku suggest fiery fall foliage flowing down mountain peaks, which are represented by the larger stones.



Ozukuri (Thousand Bloom): In this highly complex technique, a single chrysanthemum is trained to produce hundreds of simultaneous blossoms in a massive, dome-shaped array. Ozukuri are planted in specially-built wooden containers called sekidai.

Photos: Deena B. Parham for Urbanbydesignonline

Text: Deena B. Parham with notes from the New York Botanical Garden