Reference no: EM13785416
My visit to the Lan Su Chinese Garden which is a traditional Chinese garden formerly referred to the Portland Classical Chinese Garden was an awakening experience like the slogan name given to the garden - Garden of Awakening Orchids.
The experience was overwhelming since I had not set foot in the 4000 m2 city block enclosed garden located in the neighborhood of the Chinatown old town located in Portland the United States.
I could understand why the garden was mentioned to be influenced by several other famous Chinese gardens located in Sozhou region since it had all the qualities.
The garden is really renowned with indigenous features, mostly the indigenous Chinese plants, which surprisingly were all nurtured from the US since the Chinese has imposed import bans that couldn't allow the plants to be imported - the plants were originally from imported plants before the import ban was effected.
I had conducted my extensive research on the garden and found that it had some plants as old as a decade or more.
I found hundreds upon hundreds of these indigenous trees like bamboos, perennials, orchids, and water plants, as well as shrubs that were scattered through the garden - I found this unusual.
I was able to scrutinize through more than 200 plant species of plants out of the possible over 400 species before my visit was over. What however caught my attention was the structures erected (which are however common to all Chinese gardens), with the most interesting being the bridges (pronounced as ‘kwiao'), walkways which were covered (pronounced as "lang") and many more interesting structures.
The garden is the most culturally authentic gardens that I have ever visited - Lan Su is creatively a wonder that gave me a powerfully inspiring experience as well as informing me on the culture of the Chinese modelled for more than two centuries encompassing the melding of architecture, art, nature and design all in one perfect harmony.
Once I entered the inside walls of the garden, it was as if I had explored immensely and travelled through time over a different era existing in a world different from the present. The visit to the Lan Su Chinese Garden opened a window to a culture I had not been used to - the Chinese culture, and it was an experience that felt like the historical way of thinking.
I had something new and different to learn, every passing minute, every passing hour.
I noticed that the model of Lan Su Chinese Garden followed the gardens of the Ming Dynasty I had read about before the visit, which took the design of spiritual utopias; places of meditation where people could escape the escapades that came with life and connect to their real true selves, through a bonding with nature.
It is the feeling that I wanted to experience and true to this fact, Lan Su Chinese Garden has the same credence as these ancient gardens. My visit was a respite from the busy city life and I left inspired, a kind of inspiration that facilitates mental and personal growth - I had a spark of creativity in me.
In regard to the cultural window view, Lan Su gives an amazingly extraordinary view into the culture of the Chinese. I met with other visitors of all ages, who were also getting meaning and history through the great variety of enriching and experiencing activities. I engaged in both a self-guided as well as guided tours, enjoying most the ongoing lectures in different parts of the garden like those on Chinese medicine and their eating and cooking acupunctures.