Friday, October 17, 2008

Anderson Japanese Gardens

Last weekend my two oldest daughters and I headed back up to southwestern Wisconsin for another visit with my parents. We had gorgeous weather, and the fall colors in the region were near peak.

On the way to their place we stopped in Rockford, IL to see the Anderson Japanese Gardens we'd heard so much about.

The fall colors were gorgeous.

Unfortunately there was a huge population of yellow jackets, and since the Middle One is highly sensitive to wasp stings we had to cut our visit short.

We did stay long enough for a quick tour and a delicious lunch, and long enough for us to snap some quick shots of this beautiful place.

Only a few miles out of the way from our journey to Mom's, I'm sure I'll make these beautiful gardens a frequent rest stop during future visits to Wisconsin.


  1. Anonymous8:07 AM

    What a lovely spot, and the fall color is wonderful. I also love your header photo!

  2. Good morning Nancy, it was so pretty there. The photos really don't do it justice!

    Glad you like the header. I just love old barns.

  3. Linda, this has been a destination on Beckie's and my "getaway" list for some time. We visited some gardens around Aurora and Geneva a few years ago--now I can't remember the name--and had planned to go to Rockford as well, but ran out of time. One of these days she and I will find the time to take a couple day trips! Thanks for sharing these photos; I hope you'll post more from your future visits.

  4. Beautiful garden Linda. They really put some great foliage plants for fall color in this garden. That would definitely be on my list of rest stops too. (if I lived near there, lol)

  5. Linda,

    A visit home, accompanied by two daughters and a lovely garden to visit! That is an ideal way to spend time!

    Those yellow jackets, they are really busy in the fall...their last hurray before the winter forces them underground (where they belong). Too bad they cut your visit short.

    Are your daughters gardeners? That would be icing on the cake!


  6. Hi Rose, I hope you get a chance to visit someday. It was lovely. I did get a few more pictures, and will use them in a future post.

    Hi Racquel, I'd love to visit in the spring when the azaleas are blooming. I think you'd really enjoy this garden.

    Hi Gail, it was a wonderful weekend! I had a great time with the girls and with my parents, and we had fabulous weather.

    K, the oldest, is a gardener. The Middle One has potential! She's focused on her career right now, but I suspect one day she'll have the time and space for a garden. In a meantime she does well with a few houseplants.

  7. I've never been there. Someday I'll have to get out there & check it out.

  8. Hi MMD, I think you'd really like it. It's a beautiful, peaceful garden - actually two gardens - a modern, and a traditional Japanese garden.

    It's pretty far for me, but perfect as a place to stop on the way to Wisconsin. It's about half way between my house and my mom's.

  9. I will be looking for future postings on these gardens then. Sounds like a lovely place but like Gail said, the bees are so busy this time of year. Maybe on your way back down it will be colder and you all can visit again. Those statues are pretty out of this world. Are they fairies?

  10. This is fun. I know I'll probably never travel that far North. So seeing it on your blog is a treat. I have noticed that our northern bloggers have more color than we. It is beautiful.

  11. I grew up in Rockford and still have never been to Anderson. I need to rectify that, though maybe I'll wait until a non-yellowjacket time of year :/

  12. What a beautiful garden.

  13. Hi Tina, I plan to post a few more photos from the garden soon. It will be fun to go back and see more of it and have more time for photos.

    The statues are angels. They seem a little out-of-place in a japanese garden. The tour guide they give with admission says they were done by Swedish sculptor Carl Milles, originally given to the Rockford Art Museum to honor the founders of the garden. The angels are now on permanent loan from the museum.

    Anna, I'm glad you enjoyed the garden with its fall colors. A little further north in Wisconsin, the colors were even more vibrant.

    Hi Diane, oh, I think you'd love it! I'd also like to check out Rock Cut State Park. Rockford's 1/2 way to Mom's, and that makes it a great place to stop and stretch.

    I never used to stop to sightsee on roadtrips to Mom's, but as I get older I find I want to spend more time seeing sights along the way.

    We made the mistake of eating outside as well. The yellow jackets were awful. After lunch we were ready to get out of there, thankfully, unstung.

    It was so pretty Marie. Blogging is such a nice way to share gardens around the world!

  14. What a tranquil place. And I love the new header, as I LOVE old barns!

  15. Hi Brenda, tranquil is the perfect word to describe the garden.

    Glad you like the header. That shot came from the weekend at my mom's. That old barn was in such a pretty setting.

  16. I wonder if my sister knows about this place, she's not too into gardening though so I doubt it. I think that's the 1/2 way point between OH and MN, I am sure I've heard them talk about meeting here all the time to hand the kids over to her ex. What a wonderful place to visit.

    How was the trip to WI?

  17. Hi Cinj, I think even someone not into gardening would enjoy this place. It's just so pretty and so peaceful, and a great place to stop for a break from the traffic and construction mess and stress on the tollway around Rockford. There are huge windows overlooking the garden in the restaurant. The food was very good, and if you're just eating lunch you don't have to pay for garden admission. I think it would be worth the stop just for lunch, although I wouldn't eat outside again at this time of year with all the wasps.

    We had a great time at Mom's. The fall colors were beautiful when we were there. I got some nice photos, and will be doing a post or two on our visit soon.

    Have a wonderful Sunday!

  18. Love the bridge and stream shots, especially! I get really swollen up with bee stings, too! Yikes!
    ~ Monica


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