Category: Asia

After the Earthquake, Gorkha, Nepal

The Gorkha District in Nepal is located to the east of Kathmandu and historically is most important within the context of the creation of modern Nepal. It is here that the Shah Dynasty had its Royal stronghold and Palace and from where Prithvi Narayan Shah (1723-1775), King of the Gurkha Kingdom, created a unified Nepal, becoming its first …

Watching the Royals Die: The plight of the Chinar Tree in Kashmir

Greater Kashmir, one of the main newspapers in Kashmir, published the article ‘Watching the Royals Die’ by Jaasindah Mir and Jan Haenraets about the plight of the endangered Chinar trees in Kashmir. To view the full text as Pdf, go to this LINK (790 KB). These royals are the Chinar trees, the booyn, of our Kashmiri land. …

Island Hopping on the Shinan Islands, South Korea

The Shinan Islands – or the ‘1,004 Islands’ – are located in the southwest of South Korea, in Sinan County (Sinan-gun), which is a part of the South Jeolla Province. In the fall, as tourism slows down on the islands, the harvest season sets in. It becomes a wonderful contemplative environment during that time, with a …

Save the Chinar: The Endangered Heritage of the Oriental Plane Trees of Kashmir (Intro)

The Chinar, the Oriental (Eastern) Plane tree (Platanus orientalis), is living heritage of Kashmir. It is a majestic tree that can be found throughout the landscape of the valley, hillsides and cities. The oldest found Chinar is thought to have been planted in the year 1374. Their number has since the 1970s been in a steady decline with over 25,000 trees …

Mughal Gardens of Kashmir: Towards the UNESCO World Heritage Nomination (Book Proceedings)

The International Seminar on ‘Mughal Gardens of Kashmir: Towards the UNESCO World Heritage Nomination’ was held in Srinagar at the University of Kashmir from 14 to 16 May 2011 and was the first international seminar on these famed gardens. The Indian National Trust for Art and Cultural Heritage, Jammu and Kashmir Chapter (INTACH J&K), in …

Japanese Flowering Cherries, the standard book by Wybe Kuitert (free online book)

With the cherry blossoms in full bloom it is a good moment to point out that the standard reference book on Japanese Flowering Cherries by Wybe Kuitert, with Arie Peterse, with a foreword by Roy Lancaster, is now free and authorized available online. Japanese flowering cherries have inspired gardeners for more than twelve centuries. They are closely …

The Zen Garden & Why Use the Word Zen?

Prof Wybe Kuitert of the Seoul National University explores in this article the subject and origins of the “Zen Expression” in the garden art of Japan. He investigates how the theme and expression of Zen appears to not be found in old Japanese Garden texts and neither in early twentieth-century literature on the subject of garden …