The Chinese Garden Society
RUB » Chinese Garden Society

A special treasure within the Botanical Garden is the Chinese Garden Qian Yuan, a classical southern Chinese scholar's garden donated to the Ruhr University in 1990 by our partner university, the Tongji University of Shanghai.

When this fragile construction turned out to have suffered severe damage from our harsh climate within a few years, the Chinese Garden Society was founded in 2000 to prevent the imminent razing of the building and to collect donations for its renovation. After the Garden was reopened in October 2001 the Society remained in existence and now pursues two important goals:

  • to keep an eye open for new structural damage and to organize and assist in financing necessary repairs and maintenance work in coordination and cooperation with the Botanical Garden;
  • to acquaint the public with the Chinese Garden and its affairs by means of guided tours and other cultural events.

Eberhard Koch

The Chinese Garden Society is mourning the death of its cofounder and long-time secretary of the board Eberhard Koch, who passed away peaceably in his sleep on January 5, 2019 after a long and persistent illness.

Even the earliest membership rosters of the Society listed Mr Koch as an honorary member, and that not without reason. In his spare time Mr Koch was an avid photographer, who discovered the Chinese Garten as a fertile subject right after its construction. Taking extensive pictures in every kind of weather and in all seasons, he was able to capture its development over the years. These photos soon documented the steadily creeping disintegration of the young edifice and, thus alarmed, Mr Koch and his friend Arno Caspelherr produced a homemade volume of pictures, which they sent to people in public life to draw attention to the damage. That provided a decisive impetus for measures to be taken and it eventually lead to the founding of our Society, charged with organising the successful renovation and rescue from demolition of the Chinese Garden in 2000-2001.

Improved published versions of the photo volume were later sold in bookshops and provided the university with an impressive gift to present to official visitors. Pictures from Mr Koch's enormous collection adorn not only our own web pages and those of the university, but also posters promoting the RUB and many other publications.

Mr Kochs demise is a painful loss for us. The Society will always be thankful for the many services rendered by this man, whose love for the Chinese Garden found such vibrant expression in his actions.

Guided Tours

On the third Saturdays of the summer months May through August we have been offering public guided tours of the Chinese Garden, explaining the symbolic significance of the garden within the framework of Chinese philosophy. Although the 2018 season is over now, we are planning to keep this tradition alive in 2019. Watch out for more information in the spring!

Important Notice about our Contact Address

In the future please use our recently changed contact address given in the right-hand column at the Botanical Garden of the RUB. We wish to thank the Society of Friends of the Ruhr University for their assistance over many years in the past.


Our flyer about the Chinese Garden and the Society (unfortunately only available in German) has been updated. You can download it below and either read it on the screen or print it out double-sided on a DIN A4 sheet and fold it into thirds parallel to the shorter side to obtain the original format.

Qian\'s garden

Become a member

Our society is now 19 years old, but it can only continue its work if we can attract new members. If you are as enchanted by the Chinese Garden as we are, please join the society and help us to preserve this place of rest and harmony and keep it in the public view.

You can download the double-sided German membership application below. After filling it out and signing it, please send it to: Der Chinesische Garten e.V., c/o Botanischer Garten der Ruhr-Universität Bochum, Universitätsstrasse 150, D-44780 Bochum, Germany (new address!).


We are a recognized charity which furthers art and culture. Donations for these purposes can be deducted from taxable income for the German income tax. The bank receipt or a bank statement are acceptable proof for donations up to € 200 and for larger donations we will send you a receipt on the prescribed official form.

Donations can be made by bank transfer to the German bank account shown below (click on the picture to enlarge it).

SEPA routing numbers (click to open)

SEPA Daten (anklickbar)

Photos by:

Eberhard Koch