A Brief History of
Erik Sumiharu Hagiwara-Nagata
A little bit of my backround ... I am the great, great grandson
of Baron Makoto Hagiwara, the creator of the Japanese Tea Garden
(the oldest Japanese - style garden in the United States) in
Golden Gate Park, San Francisco, California. My degree is in
landscape architecture, from the University of California at
Berkeley. I received the Fred B. Barlow Jr. Memorial Award, which
was awarded by the faculty to a student for outstanding work.
In 1992, I won the first place cup from Fine Gardening Magazine
for my exhibit at the San Francisco Landscape and Garden Show,
entitled the "Rustic Japanese Garden". This exhibit
represented the following entities: The City and County of San
Francisco, the Osaka/San Francisco Sister Cities Organization,
the Recreation and Parks Department of San Francisco, and The
San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum and Botanic
Gardens. The theme of the garden exhibit was of a Japanese garden
in a rustic setting, and featured many rare and outstanding plants
of horticultural merit. There were many examples of unique Japanese
maples, bamboos, flowering shrubs, trees, and wisterias.
The Japanese Tea Garden recently celebrated its centennial anniversary
in 1994, and to highlight the occasion, I donated 1,100 flowering
cherry trees to Arlington National Cemetery to commemorate the
event. I sent 1,100 trees in order to insure that there would
be at least 1,000 trees growing at the National Shrine for all
the generations to enjoy. This number is a most felicitous one
in the history of Japan (the number bringing much good fortune),
and was a gift to the nation and to posterity. The collection
of varieties would be hard pressed to be equalled anywhere in
the country, with over three dozen named cultivars represented,
as well as seedling stock from the Japanese Tea Garden which
originally came to this country from the trees at the old family
estate in Japan. (There were also at one time 1,000 Cherries
in the Tea Garden before World War II). This particular kind
is known as the Higan Zakura, the Spring, Equinox, or Rosebud
Cherry and has been cultivated since antiquity. This species
is most known in its weeping forms in cultivation in the U.S.
A similar donation of flowering cherry trees was also made to
Golden Gate National Cemetery, San Bruno, CA. The variety 'Shirofugen'
was planted here as it is very late blooming. It was hoped that
it may still be in bloom for Memorial Day events at the cemetery.
I have also been a docent at The
San Francisco Botanical Garden at Strybing Arboretum, past Chair of the Horticultural Display
Committee, and presently the current Chair of the Bamboo Department.
I have opened a specialty nursery (Garden
Delights Nursery) in Penngrove, CA featuring
high quality ornamentals, fruit trees, maples, dogwoods
I am also available for consultations and design.
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