The Storrier-Stearns garden is a sweet little 2-acre hidden oasis in Pasadena that I discovered through Group-on. Between my work/summer schedule and it's select open days, it seemed timing wasn't on my side until last week.
I learned that during the 19th Century, Americans had a fascination with Japanese culture. The garden was built for the wealthy couple, Charles & Ellamae Storrier-Stearns by craftsman and landscape designer, Kinzuchi Fuji. The land was actually flat but Mr. Fuji began the construction of the tranquil multi-level garden that it is today after a year of planning. It took 7 years to build.
The original tea house burned down in the early 80's but was rebuilt by another accomplished landscape architect, Dr. Takeo Uesugi using Mr Fuji's original plans he took with him to an interment camp where he spent the duration of the war. The garden has several alcoves with seating so the visitor can enjoy quiet reflection and contemplation.
The highlight of the day was attending a tea ceremony where I learned the fascinating history of tea houses by a sweet docent, Yumi, dressed in a traditional kimono.
Not part of the gardens, but across the street was a little park that I wandered through before my drive home. I came upon a Wish Tree which later found out was inspired in part from an art series by Yoko Ono where a wish is written and tied to a tree.
I found it to be a beautiful and moving sentiment and didn't dare read the hopes of others.
Summer is quickly coming to an end for me with only a few more weeks to play, discover and just be...but what a summer it's been!
I'm sharing over at Tamar's today.
Happy (summer) Snapping!