This Ikebana is so big you’d think it was in Texas. But as you all know, this Philly series is dedicated to all that’s Philadelphia. Philly has gotten a lot of attention within the last week but that isn’t what this blog is about, so I’m not going to talk about it here. (Or anywhere else actually) Most of ya’ll come around here to look at pretty pictures and read a thing or two about places and cultures you love or would love to love, or would love to visit. SO, here goes. I’ve covered the details of Ikebana before here
As a refresher, Ikebana is the Japanese art of flower arranging. And if you’re like me, the first thought that came to mind after reading the definition was “what else is there to read?” I’m sure many of you clicked out at the mere mention of flowers. I too prefer hobbies that either have a high probability of injury or me coming home drunk. So I’ll admit, I wasn’t naturally attracted to Ikebana.
As a way of getting to know my new home, I’ve spent the last six months or so doing all things Philly. High on the list (well, everyone else’s list) is a place called Longwood Gardens. (See more here) Well that’s not true. It’s about an hour or so outside of Philadelphia. Located in Kennet Square, started by Pierre S. duPont, Longwood Gardens is famous for the expansive and elaborate gardens that change pretty regularly. After seeing this Ikebana display, it makes me wonder how they are able to make these installations every six weeks or so. Elves? Fairies? Witches? Michael Jordan? I’m going to start hanging out at their garbage dumpster before my next party. Seriously. It might be more shabby chic by the time it gets here but I bet it’ll look better than my current installation titled “NADA.”
The picture below is what I’m used to seeing in the Zen category of Ikebana:
But this is what they had at Longwood Gardens:
To get a better idea of scale, here’s a video.
Of course, the first thing that crosses one’s mind when seeing something like that is, “I bet you could climb that thing….”
This Dynamic Duo of horticultural virtuosos and Ikebana sensei at LG thought ahead. They were also smart. They made a Giant Ikebana tunnel large enough to walk through and climb upon. Except the spikes they installed on the outside could have stopped three ship loads of invading Vikings.
It’s been a long week. If you’re like me, you may be in need of some blog pablum. So, I’ll shut up and let the pictures do the wowing.
Here are a couple of great articles on Ikebana. The second will have you building a giant Ikebana jungle gym in no time.
Thanks everyone for stopping in. Until next time when the Philly series continues….
The artisans who designed and built the installations pictured: The Making of Blooms and Bamboo