Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Water watching: pond strolling edition

I love it when I discover something wonderful in an unexpected place. I didn't expect to find a world class Japanese garden in the relatively small city of Rockford, Illinois which has a population of 152,871 according to the 2010 census. Plus Rockford has been going through some tough times in the last few decades. An article in Wikipedia states:

"Starting as early as the 1990s Rockford has had the ignominious honor of being listed at times as one of America's worst cities by the Rand Mcnally corporation and Money magazine, sometimes being ranked one of the top ten worst cities. This may have been due to the lack of jobs and high number of outdated or closed factories."

   So I was surprised and delighted on a visit last week to Anderson Japanese Gardens in Rockford.
Having been there, I'm not surprised that the Journal of Japanese Gardening that has named them the finest Japanese garden in North America. We visited during fall colors and enjoyed seeing the hill behind the garden in glorious bright colors. The garden is in the style of a 13th century pond strolling garden. There's plenty of room to stroll as the gardens cover 14 acres (5.7 hectares).
   The garden features several waterfalls, two large ponds, and a small river. There are plenty of koi in the ponds to add to the water viewing pleasure.
Even some of the gravel reminded us of water.
If you are in the Midwest and a fan of gardens, I highly recommend going to Rockford.

1 comment:

Grand Purl Baa said...

That first photo!
It is beautiful.
The colours!