Mame bonsai

VIDEO: Shohin bonsai introduction

In this first episode in a new video series, I explain some basics about Shohin Bonsai.

Spring rain

It has been pouring cats and dogs all Easter, so it is surprising that the trees are still going on with their spring thing despite cold and wet weather. It has been a very mild winter, so everything seems to be pushed forward by this, despite the disappointing missing sun and heat now. A good …

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Shimpaku upside down

For a number of years I have been growing a small Juniperus Shimpaku, and followed the original position until now. The tree was purchased as a semi-finished piece at the Mansei-en nursery in Omiya, Japan, of late Saburo Kato in 2005, and mainly bought as a memory of the time spent with this most respected bonsai artist. One of a few I could afford.

2005. Original bonsai after purchase at Mansei-en.
2005. Original bonsai after purchase at Mansei-en.

I named the tree “Kato” for the very same reason. To remember a personality and respected artist who as one of a few, deserved to be entitled master. A misused phrase put on too many people nowadays who still needs to deserve this predicate after proving years of dedicated high quality work.

Back to the tree. After a few years of training, a tree in this size usually needs some restoration, some work that brings it back in shape. I originally had to reduce the slightly overgrown canopy after the purchase, and after that I managed to keep it in it`s form for some time. The shari (trunk deadwood) was only worked on sparsely, and I enhanced the deadwood some years ago to add some interest to it. I also extended it a little to make it better.

2005. Working the deadwood to bring in more age and interest.
2005. Working the deadwood to bring in more age and interest.

Time gone, and the tree needed to be reduced a little again in 2017. New growth was developed further back, so I now had the opportunity to reduce the length and keep the size limited. This made me think of a new possible style of the tree. A simple change with a huge effect, with little effort done.

Trying out the new position.
Trying out the new positions.

Where growth was removed new jins (deadwood branches) have been created, and this opened for a new vision of the tree. Same pot, but new position changes the view and expression of the tree. Only rearranging the left part of some roots was necessary. I was able to tilt the tree, so it performs much better now to my taste.

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The repotting was done carefully, not disturbing the roots much. The new inclining position also lifted some older roots to the surface, that in future will be a good visual nebari adding strength to the image when the soil carefully is removed little by little over time.

Mind the gap. When positioning a cascade or semi-cascade bonsai it is of great importance to leave air between the trunk and the pot. A convincing cascade bonsai shows it`s strength only if it is able to hold it self and not supporting it by resting at the edge of the pot. Keeping air between the pot and trunk is therefore an important detail.

Click the gallery below for larger pictures.

Shohin displays at Noelanders Trophy and EBA 2017

Juniperus chinensis `Otoigawa´ , Acer buergerianum – Alexandre Escudero With special permission from The Noelanders Trophy organisation are here most of the Shohin-bonsai displays from this years exhibition in Genk, Belgium.  The displays were part of the Noelanders Trophy and the EBA 2017 meeting.

Shohin-bonsai India

Do they grow Shohin-bonsai in India? Oh, yes they do. I didn’t really knew what to expect as I travelled to India in November. I was there to teach bonsai but had no idea if Shohin-bonsai was part of the bonsai world in the warm region of Pune. It was a great pleasure to watch how …

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The leaves leave

 

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Frosts are hurrying up the leaves to fall. The beauty of late autumn shows, and with some early freezing nights also the leaf drop is forced to speed up. It is not necessary to pull the trees of their place on the outdoor garden benches now, because it will be warmer the coming days. The trees also benefits of a few freezing nights, killing some possible predators hiding underneath the bark and top soil.

4 of top 5 bonsai

May I present: The Juniper. Which is the fourth bonsai I have added to this fun personal top 5 list of favourite bonsai. I could easily have made a top ten list, but we keep it at five. Junipers are without doubt one of the most popular specimens all over the bonsai world. Its qualities …

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Top 5 bonsai – Japanese maple

In this small series about my favourite bonsai specimens, it is about the classic Japanese maple. It is so obvious a tree for Shohin bonsai that I can’t neglect it at the list. The shifting kind of leaves, is the Acer palmatum and A. buergerianum have lovely leafs and good trunks if grown properly. Tolerant for …

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Top 5 bonsai – Cotoneaster

In some of the next posts i will show my personal top 5 hit list of bonsai subjects. It will be in random order, because I can’t choose one for another. The first choice is the Cotoneaster. Among its many advantages is the small leaves, flowers and autumn berries. Most are deciduous but specimens that keeps …

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Autumn arrives a little late

It has been an unusual hot start on this years autumn season. Finally the colder weather has found its way and nature do as nature must do. Leaves slowly changes their colours, and begins preparation for winter.

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