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Landscaping America: Beyond the Japanese Garden - Timeline




The National Bonsai Foundation dedicates the John Y. Naka North American Pavilion at the U.S. National Arboretum. Named for a former landscape gardener and master bonsai artist from Los Angeles, the pavilion reflects the growing popularity of bonsai in the U.S.

John Y. Naka awarded National Heritage Fellowship from National Endowment for the Arts.

Manzanar National Historic Site authorized by U.S. Congress. It is the first of America’s concentration camps to receive such recognition.

L.A. City Council votes in favor of banning leaf blowers. As with earlier bans in other parts of state, Japanese American gardeners mobilize in opposition.
Ban also prompts formation of Association of Latin American Gardeners of Los Angeles (ALAGLA), reflecting the profession’s changing demographics.


Mystery novel Summer of the Big Bachi published by Bantam. It is the first in genre to feature a Japanese American gardener as the main character. Author Naomi Hirahara, the daughter of a gardener, receives the Mystery Writers of America’s Edgar Award for third book of series, Snakeskin Shamisen, in 2007.
To see more photographs from the 1990's and 2000's, please see:

Snakeskin Shamisen Book Cover
Gasa Gasa Girl Book Cover
Summer of the Big Bachi Book Cover

Based on this original

Use a Blower, Go to Jail
uploaded by eishida
This is Roy Imazu of the Southern California Gardeners’ Federation, testifying at a L.A. City Council blower ban hearing, in 1996. The photograph is by Mario G. Reyes. This picture … More »

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A project of the Japanese American National Museum

Major support by The Nippon Foundation