Differences Between Japanese And Chinese Gardens



Differences between Japanese and Chinese gardensJapanese gardens during the Heian Period were modeled upon Chinese gardens, but by the Edo Period there were distinct differences.

Architecture. Chinese gardens have buildings in the center of the garden, occupying a large part of the garden space. The buildings are placed next to or over the central body of water.



The garden buildings are very elaborate, with much architectural decoration. In later Japanese gardens, the buildings are well apart from the body of water, and the buildings are simple, with very little ornament. The architecture in a Japanese garden is largely or partly concealed.
Viewpoint. Chinese gardens are designed to be seen from the inside, from the buildings, galleries and pavilions in the center of the garden. Later Japanese gardens are designed to be seen from the outside, as in the Japanese rock garden or Zen garden; or from a path winding through the garden.
Use of Rocks. In a Chinese garden, particularly in the Ming Dynasty, rocks were selected for their extraordinary shapes or resemblance to animals or mountains, and used for dramatic effect. They were often the stars and centerpieces of the garden. In later Japanese gardens, rocks were smaller and placed in more natural arrangements. integrated into the garden.
Marine Landscapes. Chinese gardens were inspired by Chinese inland landscapes, particularly Chinese lakes and mountains, while Japanese gardens often use miniaturized scenery from the Japanese coast. Japanese gardens frequently include white sand or pebble beaches and rocks which seem to have been worn by the waves and tide, which rarely appear in Chinese gardens.