Ro Ho En

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RO HO EN 2007 Dec 08 40230-1.jpg

Ro Ho En, the Japanese Friendship Garden of Phoenix, is a Japanese stroll garden located in Phoenix, Arizona, at 1125 N. 3rd Ave. The garden encompasses 3.5 acres (14,000 m2) and includes a tea garden and tea house. It is a joint project of the sister cities of Phoenix, Arizona and Himeji, Japan.

The Name[edit]

Ro Ho En is a combination of three Japanese words. Ro means Heron, a bird symbol of Himeji City. Shira Sagi Jou, or the White Heron Castle, is a 300-year-old medieval castle in Himeji. Ho is the Japanese word for the city of mythical Phoenix bird. En means garden.

Participation in Sister Cities Program[edit]

Himeji, Japan became a Phoenix Sister City in November 1976 and is one of Phoenix's ten Sister Cities around the globe. Phoenix and Himeji participate in business, governmental, cultural and educational exchanges that promote international goodwill and understanding. The Garden is the shared cultural vision of the cities of Phoenix and Himeji. The Japanese Friendship Garden is a 501(c)3 non-profit organization in partnership with the City of Phoenix Parks and Recreation Department and our Sister City of Himeji, Japan.

Landscape architects from Himeji, Japan have made 60 trips to Phoenix and City of Phoenix delegations made five trips to Himeji since 1987. Overall, more than 50 architects from Himeji contributed to the project. The construction cost is estimated at $3.8 million by bond funds and $1.0 million by private donations.

Features[edit]

This tranquil and beautiful setting features more than 1,500 tons of hand picked rock, stone footbridges, lanterns and more than 50 varieties of plants. While strolling the path, guests will enjoy flowing streams, a 12-foot waterfall, and a Koi pond with over 300 colorful Koi fish. One of the main attractions at the Japanese Friendship Garden is the Japanese Tea House.3.5 total acres with a koi pond that is 5/8 of an acre.

The Garden showcases more than 50 varieties of plants including two varieties of bamboo. The designers chose plant species that can withstand the rigors of a desert environment while still reflecting the serenity of a Japanese Garden. 1,500 tons of rock handpicked from quarries near Jerome, Superior, Congress and Florence line the stream beds, walking paths, lake shore and main lake waterfall.

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Coordinates: 33°27′40″N 112°04′34″W / 33.461°N 112.076°W / 33.461; -112.076