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Unity of Line





The traditional raked gravel in this Japanese garden ties the hard straight line of the veranda with the organic curves of the garden. It also serves to unify the hard line of the perimeter wall and the soft curves of garden and foliage.

This corner of the garden appears to be very green and heavily planted, but there is only one small tree in the garden. A common device used in smaller Japanese gardens is to arrange the elements to take advantage of features visible, but outside the garden, unifying it with the surrounding environment.

By Urushi88 (Own work) [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons

Myoko-ji in Ukyo-ku, Kyoto, Kyoto Prefecture, Japan

There is an interesting unity to the lines of debris left by out going tides. Close to the waters edge the lines follow the contour of the water. Further up the beach the lines flattern out to follow the shape of the tree line at the edge of the sand, creating a unifying gradation between the water and the tree line.

Lines of debris left by receding tide © John Lovett

Lines of debris left by receding tide

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