Korea is famous for its lush gardens and beautiful landscapes. As a matter of fact, Bonsai's are popular in Korea. The yearly selling growth rate of Bonsai plants in South Korea is aproximately 5 % . One of the most famous Bonsai sights in Korea is Bunjae Museum, which offers thousands of different Bonsai trees on display. We visited in the middle of winter. Most of the lakes in the surrounding parks had frozen and the top daytime temperatures were not even making it above freezing. When we first entered the nursery I wasn’t sure we were at the right place. I could hardly see any bonsai! We soon learnt that the whole collection was sheltering in huge greenhouses for the winter but that’s a whole other post. One of the most fascinating Bonsai trees is the Juniper, I happen to discover a beautiful Juniper at the Bunjae Museum. What was interesting about this nursery was how it was run. In the Japanese nurseries I have visited the trees that were living within the nursery either belonged to the nurseryman or a customer but nearly all the work was done on the trees by the professional nurseryman. This very interesting museum is basically the Korean version of Omiya museum of Japan.
Here in the Korean Bunjae Museum, hobby growers could rent bench space and grow their trees as they liked while enjoying the luxuries of a nursery such as misted green houses, regular watering, and a professional grower on site to call on for advice and or lessons etc. It seemed like a really good system and one I could see working well at other places. To imagine the ease at which you could take holidays without having to organise someone to water or without having to move the collection to a friends backyard makes this nurseries system seem like a great idea.
Now just because the growers in this green house were hobby growers it didn’t mean the trees were of a sub standard level. In fact there was a whole range of standards of trees many of which were very high leveled. The Bunjae Museum is for Bonsai enthusiasts an attraction by itself.