Photo Gallery of Visit to Japan-

This month I took a brief trip to Japan…

…I was at my teacher’s place in Obuse, Nagano for most of the time, so many of these photos are from his garden…the rest are of the village of Obuse…the surrounding mountains…and there are one or two shots from Tokyo, where I found a bag and luggage museum, off all things. Plenty of amazing national museums around and I go to a luggage museum. Well. One is only as odd as one’s decisions.



All throughout my apprenticeship I squinted up at this nearby mountain, and could barely make out a small structure up there. On my days off I never had the time to go up and find out what kind of building it was. Until this trip…


Looking from the top of that mountain down on the town of Obuse, to the left, where I studied.


The luggage museum in Tokyo…


Lincoln Proud, an American who has been an apprentice at Shinji Suzuki’s now for five months-



SeulKi, from Korea, is another apprentice at Suzuki’s—Suzuki has a truly international studentship these days.


Innovative repotting bench…with sloped sides on either side that shunt old soil into wheel barrows…the next photo should clarify…


Probably only worth building if you’ve got hundreds of trees, but fun to share-

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This and the next two photos are from Obuse. Not sure what they were protecting with umbrellas in this garden.



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  1. Les says:

    Incredible! Thank you for sharing!

  2. Sekhar says:

    Lovely photos, Thanks for sharing Michael. Brings back memories of my staying in Japan for three years. The rural side of the Japan is really ruggedly beautiful and they know how to preserve it. – Sekhar

  3. yenling29 says:

    The garden is so beautiful!

  4. Toko Bonsai says:

    Oh my good, very beautifull, i like it, greeting from me, im from indonesia

  5. Gary Croft says:

    Thanx for the pics of Obuse. Am heading to Hokkaido in Oct with MD friend & deal is I take him to Omiya & Shunka-en in Tokyo.
    I hope I can whizz him down to Aichi-en in Nagoya if time permits.
    Shinkansen can whizz you anywhere to save time!


  6. Mitchell weinstein says:

    Nice, Michael. Such a short trip!

  7. Stephen says:

    Thank you for sharing

  8. Flex says:

    Michael…The garden photos are wonderful…shows the expertise needed to groom trees to that level.
    Especially liked the pot room, and it reminded me of the one at the Kennett Collection…
    Cheers, and see you at the National!

  9. Monique says:

    Thanks for sharing.
    Question: what kind of accent plant is on the slab in the 10th picture, IMG_3662 ?

    Kind regards from The Netherlands

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