Gardens In The Worldwide Globalization Process


In the cultural space of the current period of history, the intensification of the process of cultural transfer contributes to a change in the canonical circle of national creativity, including in gardening art. Therefore, understanding the modern interpretation of the ideal space, which has always been understood as a garden, is important for determining the trends in the development of ornamental gardening in general. Intensive cultural exchange within the ancient empires gave rise to a worldwide process of universal economic, political and cultural integration and unification, called globalization. To understand this process, it is necessary to take into account a number of factors that allow foreign cultural traditions to take root, in our case, the traditions of ornamental gardening. The objects of research were more than 200 gardens in China, Japan, Vietnam, India, Morocco and European countries personally visited and studied by the authors for 25 years. The article shows how the Chinese garden culture influenced the formation of the appearance of the gardens of Europe, and the Greco-Roman architecture largely shaped the appearance of the English landscape park. An analysis of the facts presented in the article showed a close relationship between historical events and periods of development of decorative gardening techniques, which have been preserved in gardens for thousands of years along with other cultural monuments. However, it must be remembered that there is also a negative side of globalization – the loss of the cultural identity of countries and peoples.

Keywords: globalization, decorative gardening, garden, landscape, history, culture


Historically, cultural exchange has had two main scenarios – through wars and conquests, and through trade. The ancient transcontinental trade routes, such as the Great Silk Road, the Way "From the Varangians to the Greeks", the Great Tea Route, for tens of centuries facilitated the exchange of goods, technologies, and, in particular, the introduction of plants.

Thus, a side effect of the advancement of silk-growing technologies from east to west was the introduction in the southern and central parts of Europe of the white mulberry (Morus alba L.), which is considered and widely used by modern specialists as a medicinal, fruit and ornamental plant. And the four stages of the Chinese conquest of Vietnam led to an almost complete identity of the structure of the memorial complexes, which Vietnam is proud of as a national achievement in landscape architecture (Golosova and Hung Manh Chu, 2019).

The entire history of mankind is closely connected with gardens, which preserve the historical facts of intercultural exchange no worse than other cultural monuments such as painting, literature or architecture. Intensive cultural exchange within the ancient empires gave rise to a worldwide process of general economic, political and cultural integration and unification, called globalization (Makhlina, 2017).

The inevitable mixing of architectural traditions and gardening practices of different peoples in the Roman Empire led to the appearance of stone fountains, paved roads, mosaic floors in dwellings in gardens even in such remote areas as the British Isles. That did not always correspond to the climate of the area, but was a traditional element of the arrangement of life, space brought by the Roman legionaries.

Problem Statement

Changes in traditions, lifestyle, and religious views are often associated with cross-cultural borrowings reflected in gardens and preserved for long periods of history. Over the centuries, some of these borrowings are perceived by the ethnic group as part of their own culture. The authors try to focus on the problem of the loss of cultural identity in landscape art.

Research Questions

The objects of research were more than 200 gardens in China, Japan, Vietnam, India, Morocco, European countries personally visited and studied by the authors for 25 years.

Purpose of the Study

The purpose of the work is to provide a historical justification for a number of cultural phenomena reflected in decorative gardening in different countries, to show the ways and reasons for cross-cultural borrowing that led to the transformation of national garden cultures.

Research Methods

As research methods, the historical method was applied, which made it possible to assess the significance of the historical stages in the development of ornamental horticulture in different countries and the method of comparative analysis to identify common patterns of intercultural transfer in the framework of the globalization process.


In order to take root foreign cultural traditions, in this case – the traditions of decorative gardening – a number of fundamental factors are necessary: time, a higher cultural and economic level of the conquerors and a culture of settlement, since nomadic peoples did not need gardens.

So for 300 years of the existence of the kingdom of the Visigoths (approximately 418–710) – the Germanic tribes who fought with Rome and were subsequently ousted by the Arabs. They did not bring significant monuments to the treasury of the world landscape architecture due to the short existence, the lack of peaceful periods and constant movement in conquering campaigns, and as a result, the lack of garden culture inherent in sedentary peoples. The Visigoths from the south of Europe in the VII century were displaced by the Moors (Arab tribes and Berbers who joined them), who founded the Islamic Caliphate and left a significant mark on the world of decorative gardening.

The Islamic caliphate for the next 400 years included most of the Iberian Peninsula, the Arabian Peninsula, Iran, Iraq, the Caspian territories, Colchis, parts of Central Asia, Syria, Palestine, Egypt, and North Africa. It was the control over these territories that actually made it impossible to continue using the Great Silk Road.

The Moors have mastered and reworked the rich heritage of Persian, Byzantine, and Greco-Roman culture, while preserving their own originality and ancient traditions. The main achievement of the peoples who came, in fact, from arid areas is the ability to protect and rationally use water resources. The presence of water near the dwelling was a demonstration of economic success, culture, and high social status. Small courtyards with a rectangular pool were a continuation of the dwelling and a place of rest, narrow stone watercourses united all the reservoirs of the residence into a single water system, fountains with thin streams implemented the advanced engineering technologies of their time, working for centuries without electricity and rationally using water. These techniques have organically entered the garden culture of the Old World, even after the expulsion of Muslims from the Iberian Peninsula by the Christian kings of Spain. Such masterpieces as the gardens of the Alhambra and Generalife in Granada, the fortresses and palaces of Seville, Cordoba, Malaga are rightfully included in the treasury of European landscape art. They occupy a worthy place in the list of UNESCO World Cultural Heritage Monuments, but are the result of the globalization of the world during the Middle Ages (De la Herrán, 2016; Zhiri, 2016).

The expressive geometric motifs, the unexpected change of rhythm, the axial and diagonal symmetry characteristic of Muslim art, not only remained in the gardens of Andalusia after numerous reconstructions, but also successfully moved north, becoming the main motif of the gardens of the regular style.

An amazing variant of the implementation of the ideas from the Moorish gardens was the use of the reception of communicating pools in the creation of a watering system in the park of the Askanya Nova estate in the Kherson steppes. For the idea of the first irrigated park in the steppe and for the current model of the system of gravity streams at the Paris World Exhibition in 1889, the owner of the estate, a descendant of German colonists, Baron F. E. Falz-Fein, received a gold medal (Danilevich, 2001; Golosova, 2015).

In the early 16th century, Tamerlane's grandson, ruler of Ferghana, general, poet, statesman, known to the world as Babur, the founder of the Mughal Empire, undertook a successful campaign to the south, conquering Afghanistan, and then most of India. Nomadic peoples gradually became sedentary and built palaces with gardens in their headquarters. During the early period of his Indian conquests, Babur built a garden at the Rambah Palace in Agra. There, for centuries, bosquets have been preserved with the rhythm of eight-pointed stars cut from the bushes – the graphic symbol of the Mughals. The Mughals were obsessed with symbols and included them in their gardens in various ways, even the location and choice of plants were associated with family history, numerology, zodiac meaning, cultural traditions. The numbers eight and nine were considered particularly favorable. In the landscape of Indian gardens, octagonal pools or nine steps in staircases or terraces are ubiquitous. The ancient Indian culture could not resist the onslaught of Islamic traditions in decorative gardening, even the layout of the territories of Hindu temples is now subject to the Islamic principles of organizing space in the form of intersecting axes oriented to the countries of the world (Makhmudova, 2020).

The geometric layout, borrowed from Persian gardens, was filled with bright floral spaces. Since the Mughals were originally a nomadic people, the main element of luxury and decoration of temporary homes were richly decorated bright carpets, the image of which was later transferred to the space of the gardens. These flower gardens can still be seen in Pinjore of Harayana state in India, built in 1661. During the English colonization of India, the extensive flower beds were replaced with lawns close to the English. The vast lawn spaces of architectural complexes such as the Taj Mahal in Agra (India) or the Shalimar Gardens in Lahore (Pakistan) are the result of the globalization processes of the 19th century.

European regular gardens undoubtedly carry features borrowed from the gardens of the Islamic world. A typical example of Arab-Muslim artistic culture is the arabesque, the European name for a complex Oriental medieval ornament consisting of geometric and floral elements. Many Renaissance masters of different periods drew inspiration from the patterns that covered Muslim art objects. They were used in their creations by Leonardo da Vinci, Durer and Raphael (Starodub, 2020; Abbas, Nafisi, Nafisi, 2016; Ahmadi, 2016; Astakhov, 2017).

In landscape art, arabesques were used as the types of parterre decoration. The most popular arabesques made of flowers, grass and crushed bricks or gravel were in the Baroque and Rococo eras, which assumed decorative splendor, plasticity, and pretentiousness of forms. Beautiful examples of Baroque parterres with arabesques are preserved in the gardens of Versailles and Vaux-le-Vicomte. Large-scale parterre compositions using arabesques were arranged in Peterhof, Oranienbaum, Kuskov, Neskuchny, Voronov and other less significant ensembles in the Russian Empire. But arabesques were also popular in much later periods – for example, on the site of the moat of the Angers Castle in France in 1912, and even in the stalls of the Chiang Kai-shek memorial in Taipei in 1975.

With the end of the Great Silk Road, Europeans, accustomed to Chinese silk and porcelain and having tasted Indian spices, began to look for new ways and sources of wealth. With the beginning of the widespread use of the keel in ships and the improved system of sailing equipment, the era of Great Geographical Discoveries began. The center of the world's trade routes moved from the Mediterranean to the Atlantic Ocean, which had its consequences in the form of the rise of France, Spain, Portugal, Holland and England, which best benefited from the results of the discoveries (Polyak and Markova, 2004).

Since the 16th century, there has been an active period of attracting elements of foreign culture and adapting them on English soil, with subsequent imports to their own colonies and to nearby countries as English achievements. Later, lawns appeared in the Mughal gardens in India, Chinese small architectural forms and whole entertainment complexes called "Chinese Village" appeared in the gardens of Europe and England itself, the flora of English gardens began to consist of 70% of foreign plants from different continents. By the 17th century, a thousand years of dormant memory of the involvement of the inhabitants of the British Isles in the culture of the Roman Empire was manifested by the beginning of the formation of ideas about the so-called English park with its rotundas, colonnades and park ruins.

The broad campaign of intra-European cultural exchange of the 17th and 18th centuries led to the emergence of such a phenomenon in landscape art as the Anglo-Chinese park. Pagodas and tea pavilions were built everywhere in English parks – Stowe, Kew, Boughtonhouse estate, in Germany – Nymphenburg Castle, Sans Souci, Bayreuth, in the parks of Monceau, Dessert de Ritz, Chantelou and Chantilly in France, in the royal park of Haga, Drottningholm and Gronsoo in Sweden, in Gatchina, Orienbaum, Tsarskoye Selo in Russia, as well as in Denmark, Austria, Italy, Spain, Hungary, Poland, etc. (Smentek, 2019; Rohde, 2020; Kim and Luchkova, 2018; McDowall, 2017; Chen, 2013; Alayrac-Fielding, 2019).

Modern globalization processes in gardens are going on with great intensity. The end of the 19th century and the 20th century were marked by the gradual liberation of the colonies, but it was during this period that significant changes took place in their cultural environment. The gardens have perfectly preserved these features. The example of Vietnam, as well as other Indochina countries that were under the protectorate or direct colonization of more economically developed countries, shows the suppression of national cultural traditions and the gradual adaptation of national cultures to the sources of influence. However, from the point of view of European values, for Vietnamese cities, where there was no greening system at all, positive experience was gained and trends were formed to improve the human environment in aesthetic and hygienic terms. In this case, the globalization process that brought the Vietnamese people new botanical knowledge, new technologies for growing and maintaining plants in the city, can be considered as a progressive phenomenon, including in social terms, when comfortable recreation places in the city became available to residents regardless of their social status (Chu Hung Man and Golosova, 2020).

On the example of the architectural and spatial organization of gardens and parks built and reconstructed during the French colonization of the countries of North Africa and Southeast Asia (Vietnam, Cambodia, Algeria, Tunisia, Morocco, etc.), it is possible to trace the cyclical interaction and influence of different cultures on each other (Kotova, 2020).

So some of the regular techniques borrowed by Europeans from the Moorish culture, having undergone European adaptation, were re-introduced into the layout of cities and parks of the colonies, forming a neo-Moorish style that combines the basics of Islamic architecture and European comfort. A good example of this process is the gardens of Rabat-the Botanical Garden D'essay, the Belvedere Garden, the Andalusian Garden, etc.


1. The main scenarios of transcontinental mutual influence in ornamental gardening were trade and conquest, currently technological progress.

2. The spread of styles of landscape art coincides with the ways of spreading religious teachings.

3. The history of culture and cross-cultural exchange has been preserved in the gardens for thousands of years on a par with other cultural monuments.

4. The negative aspects of globalization in the field of landscape art lead to the loss of cultural identity.


The research was carried out within the framework of the State Task of the NBS-NSC RAS, state registration number 110829-2019-0032.


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31 March 2022

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Golosova, E. V., Melnichuk, I. A., Kotova, A. V., & Golosova, E. I. (2022). Gardens In The Worldwide Globalization Process. In I. Savchenko (Ed.), Freedom and Responsibility in Pivotal Times, vol 125. European Proceedings of Social and Behavioural Sciences (pp. 212-218). European Publisher.