Gardening Tips > May > RHS Chelsea inspiration – creating a Japanese garden

RHS Chelsea inspiration – creating a Japanese garden

Inspired by Kazuyuki Ishihara’s 2016 Chelsea Flower Show garden, the Perrywood team have created their own Japanese style garden to show customers how easy it is to achieve a feeling of serenity in your own space.


The message that underpins Ishihara’s gardens, and Japanese philosophy in general, is for a peaceful co-existence between humans and nature. This makes Japanese gardens perfect spaces for those wanting a little tranquility and an area for contemplation.

The upper level of our two-tired structure consists of a planted timbre trough which provides shade and shelter from which to enjoy a cuppa and view of the main garden. Key features used:

  • Natural materials such as stone, metal and timbre


  • Colour is punctuated with a strong focal point, i.e. a traditional stone feature/sculpture

Specimen plants:


  • Acer palmatum (Japanese Maple)


  • Imperata cylindrical (Japanese Blood Grass)


  • Hosta ‘Twilight’


  • Sambucus nigra ‘Black Lace’ (Black Elder)


  • Asplenium bulbiferum (Hen and Chickens Fern)


  • Azalea japonica ‘White’

In line with the Japanese approach, colours are subdued and calming but with touches of red, orange, yellow, china blues and white. The garden is awash with pleasing textures achieved from the delicate leaves of the Acers, the fine swathes of grass, crunchiness of the gravel and the smoothness of the oriental sculpture.

In Japanese garden design, every plant is carefully chosen and placed according to its aesthetic merits, nothing is left to chance. This is for the purpose of creating a picturesque scene of the natural landscape in miniature. Careful placement is also carried out to serve as a backdrop to certain garden features and to hide any undesirable sights.

Japanese landscape artist, Kazuyuki Ishihara, has been a popular personality at the Chelsea Flower Show since 2004. This year he will present his ‘Senri-Sentei – Garage Garden’, a two-tiered structure offering space for a car, with complementary planting, as well as a place for the family to sit and relax.

Twitter Facebook Pinterest Instagram