An elegant pine

Antonio Ricchiari sketches the options for the Pine of Gunther de Boeck

Antonio Ricchiari passion for bonsai started in the early seventies. He is known for his many publications in bonsai magazines and writer of many books. He runs his bonsai studio Progettobonsai, which is dedicated to the technique and esthetics of bonsai. Besides this he is also a very good illustrator and made many (bonsai) drawings in his books and for many publications.

The plan
The trunk of this mountain Pine (Pinus parviflora) inspired me immediately. A tree with a more female character. We have to take full advantage of the elegance of the trunk. But the key for success of a good bonsai is to create an aesthetic match between the foliage pads and the aesthetic character of the pine.

Concentrating on the foliage in the upper zone, we can see that, in the drawing, it accentuates the elegant flow of the trunk. The living vein enhances the image.

The first consideration is the inclination of the trunk’s axis because its asymmetric balance accentuates the elegant appearance
Another point of concern is the positioning of the apical area and the first branch by bending and the realization of the jin and the dead part which, starting from the back of the nebari gradually finds its way to the apex.


One of the predominant focal points is created by the first jin below and the deadwood that wraps around the trunk in a spiral, which accentuates the dynamic momentum. The balance shifted to the right of the first branch is balanced from the stage to the left.

The volume of the foliage and the spaces between the pads will determine the dynamics of the future bonsai. The tree is directed to the right as seen from the sashieda (a: first branch) and from the apex
The low round pot was chosen because it enhances the dynamic nature of the trunk and emphasizes the apparent imbalance. The visual weight
developed by the structure of the trunk, is in harmony with the visual weight of foliage pads. These are more apparent from the area of the first branch, that is, the sashieda
© Copyright Bonsai Europe Publications | Text and photography: Farrand Bloch