Garden of Cultivation

The Garden of Cultivation located at No.5 Wenya Nong in Suzhou city, of Jiangsu Province, China. It is one of the best preserved examples of a Ming Dynasty classical garden in Suzhou. It is part of the UNESCO World Heritage Site Classical Gardens of Suzhou on the World Heritage List. "Due to its special history, this Garden was virtually unknown before it was listed as a UN World Cultural Heritage site."


The Garden of Cultivation was built in 1541 CE by Yuan Zugeng, at that time it was called the Hall of Delights. In 1620 CE it was purchased by Wen Zhenheng (1574-1638), grandson of the Wen Zhengming the designer of the Humble Administrator's Garden, "a celebrated master painter in China's history, and served as the prime minister in the late Ming Dynasty". Wen Zhenheng was a noted garden designer and critic in his own right. He rebuilt the garden to test his aesthetic theories and renamed it Herb Garden for the numerous herbs incorporated in the design. In 1659 CE, It was rebuilt again by Jiang Cai, "a respected scholar and minister of Foreign Affairs during the late Ming Dynasty, who protested against corruption by exiling himself" and renamed Jingting Mountain Villa. Jiang Cai added a grove of fig trees. His son Jiang Shijie inherited the garden and renamed it Cultivation Garden after added the chapel of Guanyin. In 1839 CE it was transferred to the Qixiang Office of the Saint and Silk company. In 2000 it was inscribed on the UNESCO World Heritage List.

  • 芸圃 Garden of Cultivation