gardens as spaces for healing and meditation

Zen gardens, monastery gardens, temple gardens. For centuries gardens have nourished people spiritually as well as providing food. They still do. Public gardens, grand and ordinary private gardens, even small courtyard gardens are used to connect with the healing force of nature.

I’m not referring to those people who see a garden and want to dig it up to see if there’s natural gas underneath, so they can make a killing. This is a glass half-full kind of post.

Cabrini Hospital is a large local private hospital. They have a memorial garden that commemorates the lives of people who have worked in the hospital or contributed in other ways.

It is a lovely garden, well designed, combining elements of Japanese and Australian indigenous gardens.

It has a pond although it's so grown over it’s not able to reflect the sky and I couldn’t hear any frogs when I visited.

It has seating. This is not just a garden for superficial viewing. You need to take time to immerse yourself in it.

I won’t be blogging for a few weeks. I’m going to Cambodia. I will be visiting Angkor Wat, a huge ancient temple complex, parts of which are being reclaimed by the jungle. I will also be visiting a nongovernment organization called Mango Tree Garden, which provides children with the opportunity to play and laugh and be creative. I look forward to posting about these and other garden-type experiences, unplanned and not yet known.

Cheers till I get back,


  1. Dear Catmint, What you say is very true. Gardens, however great or small, do need, in my view, to provide a place for quiet contemplation if they are to be simply more than a collection of plants.

    Have a wonderful time in Cambodia and a safe return.

  2. What a lovely place. Have a great trip - I envy you.

  3. It's a beautiful garden! And it is a thoughtful idea to have such a place. I love the setting and the meaning behind such garden. Perfect place for quiet time :-)

  4. That looks beautiful. I've been thinking that I need to spend more time just sitting back and enjoying my garden, rather than feeling that I have to do some work every time I go outside.

    I hope that you have a great trip with lots of good experiences.

  5. First of all, the garden at the hospital is just lovely. I think it's so important to have these spaces in places that can be so stressful, such as a hospital.

    Second, have a wonderful time in Cambodia. The organization sounds really interesting and hopefully you'll post about it when you get back. I look forward to hearing about it!

  6. Safe travels, Catmint. I look forward to your photos.

    Gorgeous shot of the benches, walkway and plants!

  7. So pretty. Perfect place to enjoy some well-deservered solitude letting the eye flit from plant to plant while the mind flits from thought to thought.

    Have a great trip and I hope you'll share some pics when you get back.

  8. Cambodia! Wow, how exciting I can't wait to see your photos and hear about your musings along the way! Bon Voyage!


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