Tatsuno Japanese Garden

The Tatsuno Japanese Garden sits at the South end of Rora Street in Te Kuiti. This beautiful Garden was established in 1998 as a gift to provide a permanent and tangible symbol of the importance of the Sister City relationship that has developed between the Waitomo District Community and the Tatsuno Town Council in Japan. His Worship the Mayor of Tatsuno (Japan) Mr Katsuhiko Yagasaki opened the garden on Tuesday 2 February 1999.

The garden has particular significance and importance with many aspects of the garden having important cultural meaning for Japanese people.

The plants in the garden provide year round interest, and are a combination of New Zealand native and Japanese plants.  They include Flowering Cherries, Wisteria, Maples, Hostas, Irises, Sacred Bamboo, Astelia, Flax, Bidibidi, Conifers, Azaleas, Camellias, and Helebores.

The structural features in the garden include:

  • Torii gate – usually painted an orange-red colour and located at the entrance to a shrine.  Because this garden is not a shrine this Torii gate is left unpainted. 
  • Tsukabai-moyo (water basin) 
  • Azumaya (tea house) 
  • Gata – stone lantern called “yuki-mi-dohroh” 
  • Yotsume gaki fence – this one has Wisteria floribunda ‘Lipstick’ growing on it 
  • Teppo gaki fence – bamboo fence 
  • Pagoda – “Soh-toh” 
  • Hashi – wooden plank bridge 
  • Shishi odoshi - animal scarer 
  • ‘San-kyu-daki’ - waterfall


Japanese Garden

Tatsuno Japanese Garden