Saturday, December 18, 2010

Japanese Juniper Bonsai

Found this photo of one of my bonsai from 2005 that I sold. Japanese Junipers make great bonsai because they have a small leaf and therefore look more like miniature trees when styled.

If I hadn't sold this one, it would have had additional training/wiring to angle the side branches downwards. Just thought I would share the photo as I liked how this one came out and how the Buddha statue complimented it.

Sunday, December 12, 2010

Nana Gracilis : Conifer Bonsai

Chamaecyparis obtusa 'Nana Gracilis' is a decorative conifer that only grows to about 80cm in height, which makes it naturally suited to bonsai. The constrast between old (blue/green) and new growth (yellow/green) foliage make for a striking specimen.

I started this project late August this year and have been watching it since to ensure it has settled in. Eventually this will be repotted again into a shallower pot, but I tend to be more cautious with the first root pruning, so allow more room for the roots and "first year" growth. There's a little bit more styling still to do to this one, but I have purposely left it this way for the next owner to add their own "touches".

Initial plant in pot as purchased from the nursery. It's at the nursery that you look for the characteristics that will make the plant suitable for bonsai

A front for the tree was chosen at the nursery too after envisioning what the final bonsai will look like.

Now with this vision clearly in your mind, it is time to start...

The same tree, about 45 minutes later after removing unrequired branches and foliage. You can see the amount of foliage that was removed (piled infront). Also some wiring and styling have been done and the plant removed from its pot.

More wiring will be required later to formalise the style but with this tree I have decided to leave wiring to a bare minimum.

It's important to note the percentage of foliage removed to what's left on the tree.

The tree now root pruned and potted into a blue-oval bonsai pot. The blue chosen to contrast nicely against the foliage of the tree. For all the steps, reasonings and considerations, please go here.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

bougainvillea bonsai - beginning stage

Bougainvillea (Bambino Zulu)
I have many bougainvilleas in my collection as they lend themselves well to bonsai and are one of the hardiest plants. As they age, they develop rough textured bark which enhances them but nothing beats seeing them with the full flush of "flowers" (the coloured blooms are not actually flowers...the flowers are actually much smaller and in the centre of these blooms).

This one has been cut back and thinned out and some initial wiring done to get it is shape. This was done at the beginning of spring and it is now being allowed to grow out again with constant pruning to keep unwanted growth in check. As this has just been transferred into a bonsai pot and the roots pruned, I will wait until next season to start reducing the leaf size to match the size of the "tree". This bonsai currently stands around 25cm in height. I'll keep updating this blog with updates to this tree.