Ginkgo avenue in Japanese Meiji Shrine garden

This brilliant photograph, by Masahiro Hayata, combines the spiritual glory of a gothic vault with the transcendent luminance of a stained glass window.

The avenue is formed with the oldest surviving tree species on earth, the only survivor from prehistoric times. The Ginkgo was widespread 270 million years ago but disappeared – except from a small area in Central China. The seed was taken to Europe, from a Japanese temple garden, by Engelbert Kaempfer in 1692. Kaempfer  was a German naturalist, traveller and physician who wrote an important account of Japan and also made the first accurate drawings of Persian gardens.

The 300m Ginkgo Avenue is in the garden of the Meiji Jingu (shrine) in Tokyo. It commemorates the 1867 Meiji Restoration, which led directly to the astonishing modernization of Japan: the landscape architecture of this photograph involves many interests.

4 thoughts on “Ginkgo avenue in Japanese Meiji Shrine garden

  1. Christine

    Ginkgo Avenue is truly gorgeous! The recently discovered Australian Wollemi Pine is thought to have been widespread 250-1.5 million years ago.[]

  2. Christine

    I guess it does. I don’t think that this area is accessible to visitors primarily because of its location within the national park and also because of the environmental importance of the area. Australia really does has some of the most magnificent ecological evironments in the world. Perhaps landscape students might be interested in including a nature studies component in their degrees?[]


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