Dr. Sun Yat-Sen Classical Chinese Garden in Chinatown is beautiful. One side is open to the public with no admission fee. It’s a calming oasis right in Vancouver. The other side which holds tours is open to garden members and the general public for a fee. If you haven’t seen either side of the garden yet, go, go!
The garden hosted a tour, demo and workshop on Saturday September 16th. Mr. Pin Lee was the penjing master on hand. He and another host took us on a quick tour around the garden. We saw penjing on display and heard some history of the ancient Chinese art form. Pin Lee was a delight to listen to. His warm energy was great to be around and his enthusiasm for penjing was as contagious as his smile.
Following the tour, Pin Lee lead a demo using a cedar(I think Atlas Cedar?). After the demo everyone was invited to create their own penjing. Participants were able to bring their own tree to work on or could purchase a plant and pot. The tour was fully booked and the workshop room was bursting with energy(and young people!). I’m glad I attended. At only around $23 for a ticket, I can certainly recommend anyone jumping on the next opportunity. For me, I didn’t learn anything new. The plant material available didn’t rouse my interest as most were seedlings or young common species. Having a fair amount of trees and material myself, I didn’t expect to see anything on my wish list. If you are totally new to bonsai or penjing, then this very affordable activity should not be missed. For an experienced beginner like myself, well I really enjoyed it.