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Largest ever Bonsai show in Sarawak at La Promenade

BIGGEST EVER: The Sarawak OpenBonsai & Suseiki Championship's logo and poster.

KUCHING: The ‘Sarawak Open — Bonsai & Suiseki Championship’ will take place at La Promenade Mall on Feb 23-28, Wed-Mon.

SCHEDULE: From Feb 23 till 26, there will be plenty of demonstrations and talks on Bonsai and Suiseki at La Promenade Mall.

The 2022 Sarawak Open will be the largest ever, featuring an impressive field of 168 trees across Sarawak, from Kuching, Sibu, Bintulu to Miri.

ANCIENT ART: Over 160 plants have been registered for participation from as far as Bintulu and Miri.

This is the first Bonsai & Suiseki competition since 2019. Organisers, the Sarawak Bonsai Association (SBA) and Hock Seng Lee (HSL), said it is no surprise the competition will be the largest ever.

“It’s been so long since we’ve competed. Over recent years, many members have had extra time to cultivate their plants.

“I’m genuinely surprised at the number of participants registering from faraway places like Miri. You know, they’re driving all the way here to transport their plants. It’s going to be a beautiful show,” organising chairman Hayes Teo said.

EXCITED: Organising chairman of the 2022 Sarawak Open Hayes Teo.

The previous largest show attracted 130 participants.

“This time, with the support of HSL, we’ll have more giant Bonsais too. Many are easily well over 300 kilos.”

HSL executive director, Tony Yu, expressed his excitement. An avid Bonsai enthusiast, Yu said there would be 18 categories in the championship.

“On behalf of HSL, it is our great honour that the association choose La Promenade Mall for the 2022 Open. I feel extremely delighted to have so many participants. As it’s so well prepared, it was an easy decision for us to support the event financially, enabling extra categories and prizes to be won,” Yu said.

The championship will be held on the entire ground floor of the new mall. An exhibition hall has been set up specially for the competition. Plants would also be displayed in the mall’s atriums for safe distancing.

HONOURED: HSL executive director Tony Yu.

The giant plants will be displayed at the main car parking area of La Promenade Mall and HSL Tower.

“We love HSL’s strong landscaping team. Their flagship development, La Promenade, is easily the best landscaped development in the whole of Sarawak.

“HSL has planted several giant bonsais all around phase one of its mall. That was one of our main reasons (for selecting La Promenade). Their company obviously has an appreciation of landscaping. They know landscaping adds a lot to quality of life,” SBA president Johnson Jong.

ENTHUSIASTIC: Sarawak Bonsai Association president Johnson Jong.

Judging the championship will be a mix of specialists from the Malaysia Bonsai and Suiseki Society (MBSS) and the Sarawak association.

MBSS most recessively held their national open at Pavillion Bukit Jalil.

The word “Bon-sai” is a Japanese loanword from Chinese, translated meaning “planted in a small container”. This art form is derived from an ancient Chinese horticultural practice since the Tang dynasty, part of which was then redeveloped under the influence of Japanese Zen.

It has been around for over a thousand years.

“Suiseki” is a Japanese term meaning “water stone”. Suiseki is a generic term for naturally shaped stone or rocks collected and appreciated for aesthetic qualities.

GREEN: La Promenade Mall is known for its landscaping. Within the 200 acres there are half-a-dozen bonsai trees, 1,800 Norfolk Pine Trees and over 20,000 tea leaf shrubs. The mall and HSL Tower is at Kuching-Samarahan Expressway.

Entry to the Sarawak Open @ La Promenade Mall is free. A calendar of events will be published at and soon.

There will be talks and demonstrations.

For updates, search @hslcn and @lapromenademall on social media.


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