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    Posted July 8, 2014 by

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    The Bell Flower Zen Garden of Tentoku-in, Kyoto.


    Bell flowers are called kikyō (桔梗) in Japanese and the Tentoku-in temple is famous for them. The purple and white bell flowers combined with the hair moss (杉苔) of this Zen karesansui rock garden is especially beautiful. Bell flowers in Japan are one of the “Seven Autumn Flowers” and sometimes appear as crests for some clans.

    Something else this garden is famous for is its “katōmado” (花頭窓) window. Katōmado or “flower window” is a style of pointed arch or a bell-shaped window found in Japanese Zen architecture. The one from Tentoku-in is shaped as a bell flower. The Zen garden dates back to the Momoyama Period.

    The temple was founded by Zen master Mumu Issei (無夢一清) in the mid 14th century.

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