Normandale Japanese Garden

Nestled within the campus of Normandale Community College, the Japanese Garden is a hidden treasure that offers a sanctuary of serenity and natural beauty. With its authentic Japanese features, meticulously selected plant life, and a captivating array of koi, this garden provides visitors with a unique opportunity to experience the essence of Japan right in the heart of Minnesota.

A Hidden Gem:

The Japanese Garden at Normandale Community College is a true hidden gem, waiting to be discovered by those seeking a peaceful escape from the hustle and bustle of daily life. Exquisite, serene, and picturesque, this garden transports visitors to a realm of tranquility and beauty.

Authentic Japanese Design:

What sets the Japanese Garden apart is its commitment to authenticity. The garden showcases a wide range of features that are a testament to Japanese architectural and landscaping traditions. These include a garden wall and entry gate, a cascading waterfall, two charming shelters, three picturesque islands, three graceful lanterns, four elegant bridges, and a distinctive Bentendo.

The Bentendo, a hexagonal structure found throughout Japan, holds a special place in the garden. Named after Benten, the goddess of wealth, happiness, wisdom, and music, this structure adds a touch of spiritual significance to the garden’s design.

Thriving in Minnesota’s Climate:

Creating an authentic Japanese garden in Minnesota’s harsh climate required careful planning and selection of plant life. More than 300 plants, shrubs, and trees have been meticulously chosen to thrive in the state’s extreme weather conditions. The garden’s architect, Takao Watanabe, and the dedicated team of gardeners made thoughtful selections to ensure that the garden remains a breathtaking sight throughout the changing seasons.

A Living Oasis:

Upon entering the Japanese Garden, visitors are greeted by the sight of around 20 colorful koi, gracefully swimming in the lagoon and pools. These magnificent fish add a dynamic and lively element to the serene environment, and they are known to enchant visitors of all ages.

During the warmer months, from May through October, visitors have the delightful opportunity to feed the koi. For just 50 cents (in quarters only), you can purchase koi food at the garden’s entrance and engage in this interactive experience, connecting with the aquatic inhabitants of the garden.

A Place to Reflect and Reconnect:

Whether you have just a few minutes to spare or wish to linger longer, the Japanese Garden at Normandale Community College invites you to explore its tranquil corners and immerse yourself in its beauty. The garden is not just a physical space; it’s an invitation to connect with nature and find inner peace.

Recognition as One of the Best:

The beauty and authenticity of Normandale’s Japanese Garden have not gone unnoticed. It was recently included on the list of the best gardens in the country by Good Plant Care. This recognition is a testament to the care and dedication that have gone into creating and maintaining this serene oasis.

Normandale’s Japanese Garden is more than just a place of beauty; it’s a destination of cultural significance and tranquility. Whether you seek a moment of reflection, a chance to appreciate authentic Japanese design, or simply a serene place to unwind, this garden offers it all. So, take a step into the heart of Japan and let the Japanese Garden at Normandale Community College transport you to a world of serenity and natural wonder.