Difference between Chinese and Japanese gardens

combined japanese chinese garden

above:  A combination of Japanese and Chinese gardens

The gardens made by the Chinese and Japanese people may differ greatly in their styles and the reason behind the making of it.
The Chinese garden is also called as “Chinese Classical Garden” (zhōng guó gǔ diǎn yuán lín) and the Chinese Scholar’s Garden.  For the Chinese people, it functions as a private self-containing spot for them to relax with the beauty and comfort of nature.

Poetic gardens have been designed by the Chinese individuals.  It is a combination of mainly, poems, together with distinct landscapes and paintings.  The intention of that pattern is to impart ideal spirituality to associate one’s self to the nature and to revive one’s innermost well-being.   The Chinese garden is considered as well, as an escape from the growing social lives of their people.   Likewise, it is also a way for them to break away from the reality of the present and trying to get back to their ancient culture, to their natural customs and traditions.  It helps them to be spiritually refreshed despite all the distress and weariness that the country of China is experiencing.

Chinese frequently uses plants as a sign because Chinese are fond of using symbols.  One of these is the Bamboo; it is mostly seen in their traditional Chinese garden, which represents a powerful yet, deep spirited disposition.  Frequently, pine signifies perseverance, endurance, nobility and steadfastness.  Other plants include lotus for purity, and flowering plum which is considered as the most symbolic plant in a Chinese Garden, representing replenishment and strong will.   A lot of other plants are considered by the Chinese as symbolic can be found in their gardens.
Compared to Chinese gardens, Japanese gardens are known for its cultural style which brings about the countryside’s beauty.  They can be found in their homes, neighbor houses, city parks and historical landmarks such as the Shinto shrines, old castles and Buddhist temples.

The Japanese gardens are also inspired by discrete and conventional Chinese gardens.  The Zen monk, Kokan Shiren and his rhymeprose essay Rhymeprose played a great role in the historical development of the Japanese garden “bonseki“ or “bonsai”.

Japanese takes into their account that garden making is a high-art, can be associated with arts of calligraphy and ink painting.   By the 19th century Japanese gardens are designed and greatly influenced Western countries.  After years Japanese gardening’s tradition has been historically passed down from sensei to apprentice.


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