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Hokusai inspired Garden – Kathy Brown's Garden

The Hokusai Garden is inspired by The Great Wave off Kanagawa 1831 with its dramatic peaks and troughs interpreted through waves of tall miscanthus and calamagrostis balanced by the green lawn which disects the two beds. Miscanthus Goliath and Professor Richard Hansen were chosen for their impressive extra height. Miscanthus Flamingo, front right, with its graceful dropping pink heads forms a softer mound at the entrance, not unlike the smaller peaked wave which echoes Mount Fuji to the left front of Hokusai’s woodcut.

The Hokusai Garden comes to its zenith in September and October when the miscanthus flowers. Its fluffy panicles become the disintegrating claws of the cresting wave in the woodcut.

The seedheads last right through until March when they are cut down for their annual trim. Winter sunlight looks super as it lightly catches the seedheads; the soft colouring is perfect against the old stone walls of the house.

In mid to late summer the Verbena bonariensis adds colour to the scene and provides nectar for bees and butterflies.

When the autumn winds blow, this garden takes on a completely different identity with its billowing surf, angry tossing and turning and a strong whistling sound as the grasses strain backwards and forewards.