NIWA Japanese-inspired Landscapes, LLC
Uniting people with nature and beauty
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Hans Wressnigg, Ornamental Horticulturist

Hans’ fascination with Japanese design aesthetics began about twenty years ago and became the impetus to experiment and practice its application in Western-style gardens. It was the introduction to the Japanese Way of Tea (Chadō), which set the stage to study classic Japanese gardens.

For the last fifteen years, Hans has dedicated all of his time to training in the art of aesthetic pruning and various Japanese gardening techniques. His training includes an internship with the head gardener at Nitobe Memorial Japanese Garden (University of British Columbia, Vancouver), restoration and maintenance workshops at Kubota Garden (Seattle) and Washington Park Arboretum Japanese Garden (Seattle) as well as studying gardens in Kyoto, Japan. He also has a degree in Ornamental Horticulture from Edmonds Community College.

Shelley Thomas, Designer

Shelley has been involved with Zen and Chadō, the Way of Tea, since 1984. In 1986 Urasenke Foundation Kyoto (a school in the Japanese Way of Tea), gave her the opportunity to study at the school in Kyoto where she lived a Zen student life at Koshoji Zen Temple and studied the Way of Tea intensively for several months. In 1992, she returned to Japan for further Zen training at Hosshinji Sodo in Fukui Prefecture. In 2005, Urasenke awarded her a one-year scholarship to advance her studies in Kyoto. She has earned a "Chamei" license, which entitles her to teach advanced procedures. Currently, she teaches “Zen and the Art of Tea” at Western Washington University in Bellingham. Included in her design background are two art degrees from the University of Washington in Painting and Textile Design.