Japanese Landscape Design for Portland
If you have found your way to this page, you are an admirer of Japanese gardens. Welcome! So are we.
You no doubt love the way Japanese gardens look. The appeal goes deeper than that, to the way they make you feel: calm and serene. And while Japanese gardening is an ancient art, it fits the demands of modern homeowners well.
A well designed and implemented Japanese garden (or Japanese inspired landscape) will be low maintenance, low water use, look good year-round, and improve with age.
Ready to get started designing your Japanese landscape?
Why Ross NW Watergardens?
Ross "Joe" Bowen and Ben Bowen both have years of experience with Japanese gardens. We understand the difference between 'karesansui' and 'tsukubai', and know to use local materials to create both.
Joe was the head of construction for Kurisu International, a highly respected Japanese landscape firm, before starting Ross NW Watergardens. Our stone mason was trained at Kurisu.
Since starting Ross NW Watergardens in 1999 we have collaborated on private gardens with Sadafumi Uchiyama, curator of Portland's Japanese Garden. We have also worked with Mike Ellena, Toru Tanaka, and Larry Tamiyasu.
These years of experience matter. Our team has a deep understanding of how Japanese garden design works in the Portland area. And our landscape installation crews possess the skill needed to execute a truly beautiful Japanese landscape. Ability with stone is key- and that is perhaps our biggest strength. One of the earliest concepts connected to Japanese gardens is "setting stones". We love that.
Review of Our Japanese Gardening Service:
"There is one competent Japanese landscape construction company in the area, and this is it, Ross NW Watergardens, headed by Joe Bowen.... There are innumerable landscape construction companies that claim to be able to do this work. They just don't get it... But if you need a crane and someone who knows how to chain up a one ton boulder to move it, and plant it right side up, making it look Japanese good, without killing someone, these are the guys (and they had a girl on the team too).
Landscape designs are done on paper, so there is a lot of experience needed to tastefully translate the two dimensional plan into a tasteful three dimensional garden. That requires selecting plant material from specialized nurseries, including to the trade only nurseries. With Japanese gardens, it means selecting, moving and orienting boulders too, because the shape of the boulders cannot be specified at the design stage. Water features are an art in themselves.
Joe and his team are the best in the region at it...If you ever have a chance to undertake an ambitious landscape project, I can't recommend Joe and his crew more highly."
This is just an excerpt. To read the rest and check out more reviews visit Ross NW Watergarden's Yelp page.
Want To Know More?
Check out these posts from our landscape blog:
The "Inspired" Landscape. Do you want a Japanese garden? Or a Japanese inspired one?
Learning To Love Japanese Gardens. This picture heavy post from Holly Escriva (my sister) details how a visit to Japan changed her view of what I do.
What Is Shou-Sugi-Ban? Or, why are lighting my wood screen on fire?
How Horizontal Fences and Screens Are Done Right. The original horizontal fences in Portland were for Japanese-inspired, though you see them in all sorts of gardens now!
Using Boulders in The Landscape. Setting a boulder the right way is a key skill required for Japanese garden creating.