Bonsai Help

By Ruth Morgan

If you’re looking for some bonsai help consider going along to a bonsai event or demonstration. You’ll meet lots of people interested in growing bonsai, many of whom will have been caring for bonsai for many years.

Favourite Bonsai - Hinoki Cypress

Last weekend the ‘Joy of Bonsai’ event was held in Bath in the U.K. It was a great weekend with a fantastic mix of activities and demonstrations. There was a display of some magnificent bonsai trees, including this Hinoki cypress, which received the most votes as ‘favourite tree’ by those attending.

There were also many bonsai trees and supplies for sale, so a great opportunity to stock up ahead of the busy season. The bonsai trees for sale covered the whole spectrum – from starter trees requiring many years of development to display level bonsai trees. The latter had a price tag reflecting the many years of care and styling that they had received from their owners.

But in addition to all this there were 11 internationally renowned bonsai artists demonstrating various design and technical skills throughout the weekend. This was a very popular attraction and people were able to sit and watch the demonstrators at work. They explained what they were doing and were very happy to answer questions.

Techniques being demonstrated included repotting and grafting, creating deadwood effects, wiring and shaping, pruning, creating a multi-tree forest planting and accent planting.

Between them the demonstrators had hundreds of years experience of bonsai but they were not all old! The youngest, Yannick Kiggen, from Belgium is only 20 but has been working on bonsai since he was 8.

One of the event’s organisers was Dan Barton and if you’d like to see some of his wonderful bonsai collection and unique bonsai pots go to his website here.

The Japanese have a saying that the ’student of bonsai is always learning’ and this was very evident at the ‘Joy of Bonsai’ event. Bonsai enthusiasts were catching up and sharing tips and suggestions about particular trees.

So if you ever have the opportunity to attend such an event don’t miss it!

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