Come celebrate the 100th anniversary of Lili'uokalani Gardens

Discover Japanese gardening with the Aloha spirit!

Gardening workshop and private garden tour in Hilo, Hawaii

September 14-17, 2017




Join us for an action-packed four-day gardening workshop and tour of private and public gardens in the beautiful city of Hilo, Hawaii.  Learn to prune black pines, ironwood and azalea; help create a nobedan setting or assemble a lantern; learn what plants work in tropical climates; attend lectures on the history of Lili'uokalani Gardens; get pointers on shooting landscapes with professional photographers; and dine with a view of an active volcano!


Our program starts Thursday with a walking tour of significant local private and public gardens such as Hawaii Tropical Botanical Gardens and Nani Mau Gardens.  Photographers Jay Takaaze and Naomi Menor will be on hand to offer photographic insights.


On Friday prepare to get your hands in the dirt at one of three hands-on projects going on in various locations throughout the gardens.  Takuhiro Yamada and Les Isemoto will teach you how to create a nobedan stone path, while David Tamura, Bob Frost and John Powell will demonstrate small tree pruning and trimming.  Finally, help assemble a stone lantern with Mike Sasaki of Sasaki Monuments.


The fun continues Saturday with an optional early morning Walk for Alzheimer's with Dr. Greg Kadaoka, creator of the Walk with a Doc program.  After breakfast a full morning of lectures awaits, starting with "Plants that Work in Tropical Climes," by Fred Nonaka and David Tamura and "Photography Tips for Shooting Gardens and Landscapes," with Ken and Mary Goodrich.  Dr. Ken Brown will discuss the Stroll for Well-Being, and K.T. Cannon-Eger will lecture on the history of Lili'uokalani Gardens.


Several authors will be on hand to sign their recent book releases.  Leslie Buck will discuss her memoir Cutting Back: My Apprenticeship in the Gardens of Kyoto.  Dr. Ken Brown, author of numerous books on Japanese gardens and Japanese art, will discuss his most recent release, Visionary Landscapes: Japanese Garden Design in North America, The Work of Five Contemporary Masters, due out in October.


In the afternoon buses will depart for a tour of Volcano-area residential gardens, including Bide-a-Wee, Viraya and Kimalea gardens.  Bide-a-Wee is the former estate of Charles C. Kennedy (patron of Lili'uokalani Gardens) and is known for its extensive collection of hydrangeas, camellias, and azaleas.  We'll meet for dinner at Volcano House, which is on the rim of an active crater at Hawaii Volcanoes National Park, with a sunset view of flowing lava!


Sunday is the final day of the event, with tours to local nurseries.


Registration information will be posted soon.