This is the bimonthly information program of Murin-an Garden.
It provides information on Japanese gardens, invitations to events that help foster the garden and seasonal highlights.
The name of this bimonthly is Sara-Sara News.
What does “sara-sara” mean? In Japanese, this word is used to evoke a gentle rustle or murmuring sound in nature. We have adopted it from a passage in a poem by Yamagata Aritomo, Murin-an’s original owner. It reads
At the end of a water stream/That murmurs gently as it travels hidden beneath the shade of trees/I see a fish leap
We chose this publication’s title to reflect our hope that, like the ceaseless flow of the murmuring brook flowing around Murin-an, the encounters here will produce a current toward nurturing Japanese gardens for the future.
It’s autumn. Once again, it’s that time of year when we pluck the needles on the pine trees. At the end of November, the old pine needles that grew in the spring of the previous year begin to fade and turn brown by winter. This makes for an unpleasant sight and so we pluck all old needles by hand before they turn brown. Work starts at the top of the tree and moves down to the lower branches. At Murin-an, the hardest pine tree to care for is the one whose branches hang down prominently in front of the tea house. This is due to its widely spread branches and the meticulous attention demanded by the fact that the tree lies so close to the garden path and teahouse used by our visitors. The work is done by expert gardeners and still takes roughly four days.
But a pine tree whose needles have been plucked so that each one of its branches looks freshly neatened feels good no matter when you look at it. In this way, preparations to greet the new year begin while it is still autumn each year.
There are all sorts of illuminated events being held at Japanese gardens around this time of year, but Murin-an’s illumination is all about the garden. Simply put, our lighting design is planned by designers and gardeners who work together so that the garden can be seen well. The key is not to light up everything. Every garden has features that need to be displayed. We introduce our exceedingly selective standards below. ↓
1. Express depth
= An atmosphere defined through and through by profound depth. We use light placement to create a space that lets you feel what’s on the other side of what you see.
2.Making darkness present
= Lights are merely a means of staging darkness. Illumination means nighttime. Not lighting things up to look like the middle of the day!
3. Picking up important elements of the garden
= Stones with a backstory, epoch-making water stream expressions that rewrote garden history—these are the things that must be clearly shown and then blended in with the garden as a whole.
Psst! This is worth coming to. We’re an out-of-the-way spot. We’re waiting for you. We’ve even got a bar! Plus 2 explanations of the garden a night.
Twilight Garden Party
●November 22 (Fri.), 23 (Sat.), and 24 (Sun.), 5:30-8:30 PM (last entry at 8:00 PM)
●No reservations necessary
●Cost: 800 yen (drink charge not incl.) Alcoholic drinks will be served
●Place: Murin-an, main house
●Talks by Expert Garden Guides: 6:30 and 7:30 PM, for around 15 minutes