Monday, July 19, 2010

A day at Huntington Gardens Part 2- The Chinese Garden

THE CHINESE GARDEN - The Garden of the Flowing Fragrance

This garden is one of my favorite gardens at the Huntington Garden , the other one is the Japanese Garden. The Chinese garden or the The Garden of the Flowing Fragrance is the largest classical garden outside China. It is the latest addition to the Huntington Garden. Incorporating the natural geology of a landscape the architects carefully arrange the scenes you encounter to create a story, like the stories you see on their painted ancient scrolls.

I suggest that you just flow along, photographing whatever catches your interest ( like what I did )... I didn't know where to start... There was  simply too much here to see and describe which you should capture in your camera.

Far from the frenetic pace of modern China, hidden behind the walls of San Marino, a placid garden links botany with poetry with the elegant grandeur of its ancient civilization. The Chinese Gardens opened in 2006. They hired  11 stone artisans from China to install the hand-carved bridges and to place the stones all around the lake. Another 50 Chinese wood carvers, roof tile experts,  and stone pavers to work on the structures inside the Chinese garden. Nearly all the materials used except structural steel and concrete materials came from China.

Here I used the round doors, willow trees and the wooden structures to frame the surrounding landscape.

These types of classical gardens are linked to that country's artistic and literary traditions. Imagery from nature is frequently found in Chinese paintings, and with the  cultural arts being incorporated into garden design either literally or symbolically.

The garden reflects a traditional Suzhou-style garden which features a lake, a tea house, pavilions, and five stone bridges set against a wooded backdrop of mature oak and pine trees. Suzhuo, one of China's oldest and most prosperous cities, is home to the magnificent gardens that were added to the list of UNESCO World Heritage sites in 1997. The gardens' meticulous design reflects the sense of peace found in the Chinese relationship with nature.

 The main attractions in the Chinese garden are: 

 the Pond of Reflected Greenery..

The Jade Ribbon Bridge... This Jade Ribbon bridge forms the focal point of the Huntington Chinese Garden in San Marino.

and the Pavilion of Three Friends.

Walking around the garden's main entrance is like stepping back into the 16th century in China. The beauty of the garden is reflected in its name --- the Garden of Flowing Fragrance...better known as Liu Fang Yuan.

It was nearly lunch when I reached the Chinese gardens -- so I decided to have a quick bite at the Chinese tea house... and continued my walking tour.

I had a Chinese dim sum sampler  and ice cold Jasmine tea. The spring rolls were very crsipy, the chinese steam buns were tastefully done... not too salty and shrimp dumpling wrappers were not thick.

After lunch I went to make next stop.... the Japanese Gardens.

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